Christchurch mayor Lianne Dalziel is going to ask for the $85 million rebuild of the central library to be scaled back so it can be completed without delay.
The council had been hoping to fund $10m of the cost through philanthropic donations, but had so far been unable to attract any money in this way.
The project was facing delays while further efforts were made to find a willing donor.
However, Lianne Dalziel today said the project was too important to wait for philanthropic donations.
"I would actually rather we re-look at the project because in terms of the scope of the project, if $10m has to come off the price, I'd rather we got on with the project."
She said there was a place for philanthropy in funding rebuild projects and the council would continue working with the government to set up a foundation to allow this to happen.