Reinventing the modern library

Slate profiles the six winners of the AIA/ALA Library Building Awards - a collaboration between the American Institute of Architects and the ALA.

27 April 2015

One winning library is Cedar Rapids Public Library, Iowa, whose director had the aim of having the building function 'more like an Apple store'. It is 10,000 square feet bigger than the old, flood-damaged library, but uses a third of its energy.

The children’s library at Little Rock, also featured, includes a teaching kitchen, greenhouse, vegetable garden, and arboretum where kids can learn to grow and cook healthy food.

Mission Branch Library at San Antonio includes a 30-foot-tall reading room,locally sourced sandstone wainscoting, white stucco, and a roof covered with locally made clay tiles.

Vancouver Community Library, Washington State moved from the suburbs to the city’s busy commercial centre. It includes a 200-foot-long, four-storey atrium and garden with a roof terrace as well as lounges, rooms dedicated to teenagers, interactive early learning children’s spaces, individual study pods, and a 150-person conference room.

Other award winners are the Slover Library, Norfolk, Virginia and the renovation of the academic library at the University of Massachusetts–Dartmouth.

The Slate feature, Reinventing the Modern Library as a Tech-Forward, Eco-Friendly, Community Hub, is well-illustrated, giving an insight into how the modern library is enhancing both its technology and environmental credentials.

 

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