May 26, 2016

Work/Space | Library by Design, Spring 2016

At left, flexible reference desk space at the Munday 
Library, St. Edward’s University, Austin, TX.

The world of academic libraries is constantly changing. Many libraries, for example, have undergone radical spatial changes in recent years, positioning themselves as campus centers for study and socializing. These shifts focus on the student’s or library patron’s experience but show little concern for how librarians’ work spaces are changing to meet the profession’s new demands. Finding minimal literature on this topic, we decided to issue a survey directly to academic librarians to delve into their roles and how their spaces affect the quality of their work.

Branching Out, May 2016

James Branch Cabell Library, 2016

The Michelle Obama Neighborhood Library topped off in Long Beach, CA; the J.L. Robertson Branch, Rapides Parish Library, LA, reopened; Virginia Commonwealth University remodeled the James Branch Cabell Library; and more new construction and renovation news from the May 1, 2016 issue of Library Journal.

Branching Out, April 2016

Christa McAuliffe Branch

The new Christa McAuliffe Branch of the Framingham Public Library, MA, opened; the Florida Institute of Technology, Melbourne, underwent renovation for its Digital Scholarship Laboratory; and more new construction and renovation news from the April 1, 2016 issue of Library Journal.

Branching Out, March 1, 2016

The new Canal Winchester Branch of the Columbus Metropolitan Library, OH, opened; the Richland Library, Columbia, SC, is about to embark on a major construction project; and more new construction and renovation news from the March 1, 2016 issue of Library Journal.

MIT’s Future of the Library: Encouraging Social Knowledge-Building

David Adjaye, Eugene McDermott Award in the Arts at MIT Recipient presents at the Future of the Library panel at MIT. Image courtesy of MIT, photo by L. Barry Hetherington

On February 11, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) hosted a discussion on “The Future of the Library” as part of the Eugene McDermott Award in the Arts at MIT. The award is given to a prominent artist in any field who embodies MIT’s commitment to risk-taking, problem solving, and connecting creative minds across disciplines.

Mellon Foundation Grants $1.2 Million to Hampshire College Library Redesign


The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation has issued a $1.2 million grant to remake the Harold F. Johnson Library at Hampshire College, Amherst, MA, as a Knowledge Commons—an integrated, centralized hub of content, tools, and academic support services. While the library’s transformation over the next four years looks to a brand new service model, it also continues the tradition of innovation on which the library was established some 50 years ago.

Branching Out, February 2016

The $2 million renovation of the Carnegie Library Learning Center on the Health Sciences Campus of the University of Georgia, Athens, is now complete. Funded through donations from the Tull Charitable Foundation and the Callaway Foundation, the work on the 1910 Beaux Arts building returned some of the original features to the facility and includes […]

Building Blocks of an Innovation Space | Field Reports


The maker movement and 3-D printing technology catalyze innovation and promote entrepreneurship by emphasizing “making” over “consuming” and facilitate experiential learning and rapid prototyping. To many, library Maker spaces are also often the only facility within their reach that offers open access to 3-D printing and scanning equipment. For these reasons, creating a Maker space for patrons is often an ­attractive project.

Branching Out | December 2015

The North Miami Public Library completed its $1.5 million renovation, ground was broken for the new South Central Regional Library, Louisville Free Public Library (LFPL), KY, and more new construction and renovation news from the December 2015 issue of Library Journal.

Bringing Boston In | Design4Impact

Bright colors transform BPL’s Brutalist Johnson Building.
Photo ©Robert Benson Photography

The average age of users in the newly renovated second floor of Boston Public Library’s (BPL) Johnson Building has come down at least a decade, and it’s easy to see why. Philip Johnson’s massive addition to BPL’s iconic Beaux-Arts style McKim Building opened in 1972. According to the BPL website, the requests for the exterior were that the building should “observe the existing roof line of the McKim Building, and to use material (Milford granite) that would harmonize with the exterior of the existing Central Library building.” The result was a Brutalist monolith, experimental in structure and stark in aesthetic.