Blueprints for $120M Austin Public Library Nearly Complete

The new Austin Public Library will feature a light-filled atrium, street-level cafe and multiple gathering spaces, according to the most recent designs unveiled by its architects. Designs, which have been in the works for the past three years, show that the six-story building will also include a street-level bookstore and a special event center, reports KVUE.com.

The new Austin Public Library will feature a light-filled atrium, street-level cafe and multiple gathering spaces, according to the most recent designs unveiled by its architects. Designs, which have been in the works for the past three years, show that the six-story building will also include a street-level bookstore and a special event center, reports KVUE.com.

The new central library is designed to respect current and future trends among readers who go to libraries not just for the purpose of borrowing books, but also to utilize a public space where they can see a performance, gather in lecture groups or simply use the computers to find a job, according to John Gillum, facilities process manager for the Library Department, as quoted by the Austin-American Statesman.

The 200,000-square-foot building, designed by firms Lake/Flato Architects and Shepley Bulfinch Richardson & Abbott, will have a facade composed of a mix of limestone and glass that will let in plenty of natural light.

Members of the city council seemed very pleased with the “library of the future,” which is expected to break ground next fall. When completed in the winter of 2015, the $120 million library will replace the 33-year-old John Henry Faulk Central Library. If completed with 110,000 square feet, the new facility will contain 530,000 books, as well as 24,000 electronic books.

Architects are boasting the design of the building, which is set to become the most sustainable library in the country, employing sustainable features such as energy-efficient integrated systems, extensive use of daylight, a rainwater harvesting system and a vegetated roof.

Photo credits: Lake Flato Architects and Shepley Bulfinch

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