The New Normal slide

From Design to Dedication

June 25, 2017

“We had a dilemma,” says Cyr. “It was a really hard pill for anyone to swallow as to why we would build new public building for $18 million.” Still, champions of the library—both political and internal—pressed on and the new building finally opened in 2012, a full 14 years after it was first envisioned. “The … Continue reading From Design to Dedication


Spacesaver cantilever shelving units on casters at the Glendale branch of the Salt Lake City Public Library

Extend Your Space

June 1, 2017

Spacesaver Cantilever Shelving Spacesaver’s cantilever library shelving has the ability to evolve with changing needs. It has a range of interchangeable accessories—pull-out shelves, media hangers, and slat-wall add-ons—and can also accommodate larger changes. You can mount its shelving onto casters to make it easily movable to create open spaces for events or other library services. The new A-frame cantilever display … Continue reading Extend Your Space


Chicago’s Northtown library branch, shown here in a rendering, will have a ground-floor library with senior housing above.

Bringing the Library Home

May 1, 2017

A rocky start In August 2013, the first satellite library in a public housing development opened at Estrada Courts in Los Angeles, a joint project between Los Angeles Public Library (LAPL), the Housing Authority of the City of Los Angeles (HACLA), and Kids Progress Inc., a nonprofit established in 2009 by HACLA. The program was … Continue reading Bringing the Library Home


Research Libraries Transform

January 22, 2017

Catherine Murray Rust, dean of libraries at Georgia Tech University, detailed how her library undertook such an endeavor in Reimagining the Research Library for the 21st Century, an ALA Masters Series session at the 2017 ALA Midwinter Meeting. It was an extensive project, with some elements still ongoing, but it boiled down to three basic … Continue reading Research Libraries Transform


Wow Us with Your New Library

January 4, 2017

American Libraries is now accepting submissions for the 2017 Library Design Showcase, our annual feature celebrating new and newly renovated or expanded libraries of all types. The showcase will appear in the September/October 2017 issue. We are looking for libraries that are shining examples of innovative architecture and that address patrons’ needs in unique, interesting, … Continue reading Wow Us with Your New Library


The Salt Lake City Public Library's shared space includes a library store, art gallery, hair salon, florist, public radio station, and coffee shop.

A Balancing Act

November 1, 2016

Probably not, but at the Salt Lake City Public Library, that’s exactly what you’ll encounter. “Having any of these within a flagship library is a unique arrangement,” says Andrew Shaw, the library’s communications manager. In addition, a café, a coffee shop, a public radio station, a writing center, and a library store occupy the first … Continue reading A Balancing Act


National Library Board of Singapore's library@orchard

International Library Innovators

September 23, 2016

The citation began as an initiative of Loriene Roy, 2007–2008 ALA president. Since its inception, 38 groups have been presented with the honor. The four 2016 winners were recognized for designing and implementing highly visible, innovative services that greatly improve existing library services for users. The projects draw attention to the potential of library service … Continue reading International Library Innovators


2016 Library Design Showcase

2016 Library Design Showcase

September 1, 2016

Welcome to the 2016 Library Design Showcase, American Libraries’ annual celebration of new and renovated libraries. These are shining examples of innovative architectural feats that address user needs in unique, interesting, and effective ways. New construction dominated this year’s submissions, but renovated and repurposed spaces were a close second, showing how today’s libraries are both … Continue reading 2016 Library Design Showcase


2016 Library Design Showcase

ALA/IIDA Library Interior Design Awards

September 1, 2016

The following libraries are winners of the 2016 Library Interior Design Awards, sponsored by ALA and the International Interior Design Association (IIDA). The biennial competition honors international library interior design. Winners demonstrate excellence in aesthetics, design, creativity, function, and satisfaction of the client’s objectives. The competition is managed by the Library Leadership and Management Association … Continue reading ALA/IIDA Library Interior Design Awards



Dewey Decibel podcast episode five

Dewey Decibel Podcast: Library Design

August 30, 2016

Brian Lee from Skidmore, Owings, and Merrill, the chief architect behind Chicago Public Library’s award-winning Chinatown branch. Lee and Morehart discuss the new Chinatown library and why it’s important for a library to integrate itself into and reflect the community it serves. Kimberly Bolan, the library consultant behind Kimberly Bolan and Associates and author of … Continue reading Dewey Decibel Podcast: Library Design