July 29, 2015

Design for People | Library by Design Spring 2015

1. The Main Library’s Guastavino Room was an impressive backdrop to registration
and lunch. 2. Attendees tossed around ideas during the Gloucester Lyceum/Sawyer
Free Library’s challenge session. 3. The Open Forum allowed for suggestions from
participating architects (l.–r.) Aimee G. Lombardo (LLB Architects), Peter Gisolfi
(Gisolfi Associates), Peter Bolek (HBM Architects), and Matthew Oudens (Oudens Ello
Architecture). 4. The challenge session for Maryland’s Towson University brought
about solid strategies. 5. The session on creative and inspirational spaces featured
experts (l.–r.) Conrad Ello (Oudens Ello Architecture), Michael Colford (director of
library services at Boston PL), moderator Emily Puckett Rodgers (School of Information,
University of Michigan), and Jeff Hoover (Tappé Architects). Photos by Kevin Henegan

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“The shift to digital and changing user expectations means that even buildings only ten or 20 years old may already be out-of-date….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?”

Crossroads of Design | Library by Design, Fall 2014

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In a time when the mission of libraries is rapidly evolving, how can we craft buildings that not only endure but thrive when meeting new challenges? This question underlined the learning at LJ’s Design Institute (DI) held May 16 in Salt Lake City. Presenters and peers asked attendees to redefine how they thought about sustainability, exploring the idea in terms of conserving energy and being environmentally responsible and looking at the sustainability of a building holistically—from how comfortable patrons and employees are to how the space can change to support new ventures, some of which designers and librarians might not have imagined yet.

Design Institute Design Challenges | Library by Design, Fall 2014

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At LJ’s Design Institute: Salt Lake City, attendees in interactive brainstorming breakout sessions addressed design challenges posed by real life libraries in Texas, Washington, Idaho, Utah, and Arizona.

Design Institute Design Challenges | Library by Design, Spring 2014

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LJ’s Design Institute in St. Louis tackled design challenges posed by the Indiana State Library (ISL) in Indianapolis; Brentwood Public Library, MO; The Pinney Branch of Madison Public Library, WI; Joplin Public Library, MO; and The Curtis Laws Wilson (CLW) Library at Missouri University.

Creation Nation | Library by Design, Fall 2013

SEATTLE DREAMING Top row, l.-r.: Design thinkers gathered at Seattle PL’s Central Library, a city icon now rivaling the landmark Space Needle Once welcomed and signed up for the day’s challenge session, the fun began. Bottom row, l.-r.: Joining in were (l.–r.): King County Library System’s Bill Ptacek and Adrianne Ralph and Seattle PL’s Marcellus Turner. The library’s auditorium did double duty hosting panels and challenges. Bottom right photo ©2013 Koshtra Tolle/Getty Images; all other photos by Kevin Henegan

There are few more exciting places to contemplate the evolution of library design than Seattle’s Central Library, designed by Rem Koolhaas. Opened in 2004 and still surprising, it proved to be a vibrant setting for LJ’s 13th daylong Design Institute (DI), held there May 10 and developed in partnership with Seattle Public Library (SPL) and neighboring King County Library System (KCLS). Some 100 participants gathered with architects and vendors for a confab about the changing shape of library spaces as collections alter in response to digital content and budget-driven, ever-morphing staff levels.

Change Is Coming: Design Institute, Cuyahoga County, OH | Library by Design

The Cuyahoga County DI took place in the Warrensville Heights Branch, designed by HBM Architects.

LJ’s Design Institute (DI) in Cuyahoga County, OH, was itself an example of one of the major trends it planned to cover—flexibility. When Hurricane Sandy rendered New York–based LJ staff and many presenters incommunicado or unable to travel to the event on its originally scheduled date, architects and the event’s host, the Cuyahoga County Public Library (CCPL), worked with LJ to pull off a rescheduled get-together only a month later on December 14, 2012. Attendees re­arranged their schedules to provide a full house despite the short notice and approaching holiday season.

Design for Change | Library by Design, Spring 2012

How do you plan for a future you can’t predict? By building flexibility into the design. That was one of the main takeaways from LJ’s latest Design Institute (DI), held at the Denver Central Library on May 4.

The DI, LJ’s 12th in a series on trends in library design, was a one-day symposium composed of panels, presentations, and breakout sessions, featuring a mix of architects, vendors, and librarians. On the day before the event, the Denver Public Library (DPL) and Anythink Library (Rangeview Library District), in cooperation with several local architects, organized a tour of recently designed or redesigned local Colorado libraries, culminating at Denver Central itself. […]

Libraries Should Be What Users Want—With a Little Help from Librarians | Editorial

As many of us here at LJ gear up to attend the American Library Association conference in Anaheim, it seems an appropriate time to reflect on the future of libraries.

Building Smart: LJ’s Design Institute Inspires Spaces for the Future | Library by Design, Spring 2012

The first panel on envisioning library futures through integrated building design offered pointed comments from Schaper and Barker Rinker Seacat’s Bruce Flynn (next photo)

Some 90 librarians, architects, and vendors gathered to talk about how to build for flexibility in uncertain times and brainstorm solutions to a handful of design challenges.

Design Institute: Six Space Challenges from Six Libraries | Library by Design, Spring 2012

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See the Challenges and Brainstorms featured at LJ’s daylong Design Institute held November 11, 2011 at Phoenix’s Burton Barr Central Library.