Old Woodridge Library Torn Down to Make Way for State-of-the-Art Facility

Mayor Vincent C. Gray and DC Public Library Executive Director Richard Reyes-Gavilan met with residents on Wednesday, May 7, to celebrate the demolition of the old Woodridge Library. It will make way for a new, modern library, able to meet the current and future demands of the community.

Mayor Vincent Gray and DC Public Library Executive Director Richard Reyes-Gavilan met with residents on May 7 to celebrate the demolition of the old Woodridge Library. It will make way for a new, modern library, able to meet the current and future demands of the community.

The old Woodridge Library opened in 1958 at 1801 Hamlin St., N.E.; the new facility is scheduled to open in 2015. The new library will have separate spaces for adults, teens and children, with seating for 200 customers, 40 public-access computers and free Wi-Fi, a large programming room for as many as 100 people and two conference rooms accommodating 14 people. It will be home to 40,000 books, CDs, DVDs and other library materials. It will also be the first library to have a roof terrace that will also serve as a space for library programming.

According to the city, the total budget for design and construction of the new facility is $16.5 million. It will be constructed by Coakley Williams Inc. and Blue Skye Development LLC. The project’s architects are Wiencek + Associates and Bing Thom Architects. The community also helped with the design of the building.

Both Mayor Gray and Reyes-Gavilan praised the community for its involvement, while also encouraging district residents to provide input into the renovation and services at another library: the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Library. Since last fall, more than 2,000 people have sent feedback on that plan. It is being incorporated into a preliminary design to be presented on May 19.

“The new Woodridge Library, like the new Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Library, will serve the community – so it’s crucial that the community provide as much input as possible so these new facilities serve the needs of all our residents,” Mayor Gray said in a statement for the press. “The Woodridge Library will be great because its design will reflect the input that area residents provided, and I am optimistic that we can achieve something similar for the district’s flagship library when it is renovated.”

”Thanks to our partnership here, the new Woodridge Library will offer district residents world-class library services that can change as the ways we read and learn change,” Reyes-Gavilan added.

Photo credit: Bing Thom Architects