May 26, 2018

Librarians Pick Their Favorite Outdoor Furniture and Art from Recent Building Projects | Library by Design, Spring 2012

Lolling Around

Hennepin County Library—Maple Grove enhanced its outdoor reading porch with Loll Designs’ Adirondack chairs and benches, composed of recycled milk jugs. They encourage folks to step outside and enjoy the “newest community gathering space.” Loll Designs,

How Your Readers Grow

The Reading Garden adjacent to the Community Room of the Visitacion Valley Branch Library,
San Francisco PL, is intended for public events as well as contemplation.
Timberform Greenway Contour benches
offer comfortable seating.
The space was designed by Brian Gatter, Landscape Architect, City and County of San Francisco.
Columbia Cascade, Co.,

Cure for the “Ouchies”

Kentwood Branch Library, MI, chose the 35 Collection: Mix from Landscape Forms
“because it provides small groupings of comfortable seating along with attached tabletops
for drinks, books, etc. The seating is porous so it doesn’t hold water and is coated
to avoid the ‘ouch’ factor in the hot sun.” Landscape Forms,

Artwork Is Phenomenal

Janet Lofquist’s sculpture “Phenomenon” encompasses welded stainless steel rods and glass “rocks”
with crystallized surfaces that “catch glints of sunlight.” It completes the landscape of the new
Hennepin County Library—Maple Grove. The artist sees it as “a visual metaphor of the creative process
and the alchemy of idea and images within the context of the library.”

Why Drive When You Can Bike?

A Welle spiral bicycle rack is provided to the right of the entrance
of the Visitacion Valley Branch of San Francisco Public Library
for sculptural interest in addition to its function as bike parking.
Palmer Group,

A Space That Percolates

The entrance to the Visitacion Valley Branch Library of San Francisco Public Library
is framed by a pair of Canary Island Date Palms (Phoenix canariensis) in a plaza
constructed of permeable Ekopavers. The surface allows rainwater to percolate directly
into the ground around the tree roots. The warm tone of the paving is intended
to enhance the building finishes. Airostone Corporation,

Scaling Outdoor Design

The Ortega Branch of San Francisco Public Library features “Abundance” in its landscape
from the artist collective Wowhaus. An invitation to commune with the space,
the sculpture reflects the local marine life. Wowhaus,

Bette-Lee Fox About Bette-Lee Fox

Bette-Lee Fox ( is Managing Editor, Library Journal.

Celebrating her 46th year with Library Journal, Bette-Lee also edits LJ’s Video Reviews column, six times a year Romance column, and e-original Romance reviews, which post weekly as LJ Xpress Reviews.