When Michigan’s Grand Valley State University (GSVU) built a new library a few years ago, Dean of Libraries Lee Van Orsdel wanted staff and stakeholders alike to throw out the rulebook on library design. The result was an acclaimed space that has been a hit with GVSU students, driving more traffic to the library and changing how students use it—changes that in turn have even influenced other industries.
SOUTH The new Northside Branch of the Jefferson-Madison Regional Library, Charlottesville, VA, opened on March 16. The 30,000 square foot, $11.8 million facility in what was a hardware supply store replaces its 16,000 square foot 1991 shopping center predecessor. The HBM Architects–designed library features a Maker space; conference rooms; a dedicated teen space with music […]
Chula Vista Public Library, CA, opened community space, the Hub; renovation of the Jamaica Plain Branch of the Boston Public Library will begin on August 1, and more new construction and renovation news from the June 1, 2015 issue of Library Journal.
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, according to BPL President Amy Ryan, and it’s easy to see why. The goal was to create a library that is flexible and responsive to user needs. BPL’s management is serious about the principles in its strategic plan, called the Compass. “We take those eight principles very seriously. We even take fun (Principle #8) seriously…. It really is about the user, the expectations of the user of all ages.” said Amy Ryan, BPL’s CEO.
Joint-use libraries, especially partnerships between public libraries and colleges, are rare but not unheard of. In an era of belt-tightening, pooling resources with a partner that shares many of your institution’s goals can be a tempting proposition for schools and cities alike. It’s complex, but as seen at the Tidewater Community College/City of Virginia Beach Joint-Use Library, opened in 2013, it can also be extremely rewarding.
Before Boston saw its first snowstorm of what would prove to be a very long winter, an enthusiastic group of architects, designers, vendors, and librarians convened at Boston Public Library’s (BPL) Central Library in Copley Square for LJ’s December 2014 Design Institute (DI). The first question of the event, posed by Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners library building consultant Lauren Stara, set the stage: “The shift to digital and changing user expectations means that even buildings only ten or 20 years old may already be out-of-date…. How do we build for an ever-changing environment?”