Hobsons Bay Street Libraries

What is a street library?

Street libraries are boxes attached to a property that provide small free book exchanges for community to use. Street libraries foster friendships and discussions, and most of all access to wonderful and diverse books for free. Some street library hosts have set up fruit and seed exchanges on or below their street libraries also.

Where can I find a street library in Hobsons Bay?

There are over 30 street libraries in Hobsons Bay. You will find them in neighbourhoods, local playgrounds, shopping precincts and community centres. We encourage every new street library to register with Streetlibrary.org.au.

You can find your nearest street library on this map.

HBCC Street Library map

In 2019, following the success of the Reading Tree at Altona Gate (by Brooklyn resident and Cultivate Leadership Program Graduate Maria James), Council worked in partnership with the Hobsons Bay Men’s Shed to build and install 20 new street libraries for community across Hobsons Bay. 

Street Library image1 Street Library image2Street Library image3


How can I become a street library host?

Being a street library host is a great way to swap and exchange books, and connect with your community. Street libraries are community assets, but require some maintenance, restocking and looking after to ensure they are well used and cared for by the community. 

  • You can build or buy your own street library and install it within your private property boundaries. There are some great options for building and buying available through StreetLibrary.org.au. They can range from $100 to $3,000 depending on your design, how you decorate it and the installation requirements.

  • Council has a range of community grants each year that local community clubs, groups and not-for-profits can apply for to assist in the creation and installation of a street library.

  • You will need permission to install one, from your landlord / land owner.

  • You should always ‘Dial before you dig’ toll free on 1100, if you are installing the street library into the ground.

  • Join the Hobsons Bay Street Library Hosts Facebook page. It’s full of tips, support and guidance on becoming a host, along with events and activities to connect with each other and support book exchanges across the municipality.

How can we get a street library in our local playground, shopping precinct or community centre?

  • You can approach a local trader association or shopping precinct and encourage them to install a street library. Some traders across Hobsons Bay have already taken on this role, check out the Logan Reserve and Harrington Square street libraries that are looked after by the Altona Traders Association.
  • You can approach your local community centre and support them to install a street library. Many already have street libraries and welcome you to come and use them.