Naperville Public Library  |95th Street

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LOCATION:

Naperville, IL

 

CLIENT:

City of Naperville

 

SITE   AREA:

5.0 acres

 

SIZE:

74,000 sf | 6,874 sm

 

PROGRAM:

New branch library including adult and children collection, computer lab, private study rooms, quiet study, meeting rooms, administration and staff areas, coffee bar

 

DESIGN:

2000-2001

 

CONSTRUCTION:

2001-2003

       (developed as the Design Director of Dewberry)

 

TYPE:

Civic | Library

 

 

Redefining the Library in its Agrarian Roots

 

The 95th Street Library facility was the third library constructed in the City of Naperville.  When planning this library, which extended traditional library services to the growing population in the City’s southern sector, Library officials determined that this facility should offer enhanced public access to technology.  This is the City’s largest Library and it is located on a 6.5 acre parcel of a larger 70-acre park and community center campus.

 

The plan and massing of this project were conceived in parallel, generated from the irregular shape of the western edge of the site.  Broken into three volumes and shifted apart to give the building a more pedestrian scale, these elements recall the vernacular forms of the barns that were once present on the site.  A bent plane intersects the three volumes to give continuity to the forms, resembling an ad hoc assemblage of buildings.  As the roof moves from south to north, it bends toward the ground providing the canopy for the vehicular book-drop.  This multi-dimensional roof also becomes the identifying feature of the Library, highlighting its presence to 95th Street, the main thoroughfare to the north.

 

Traditionally, libraries have been very function driven, organized around books, patron use, staff needs, and technology access.  The evolving and greater emphasis on merchandising drove some of the organization of the plan as well as the access to new books and audiovisuals and dictated their position opposite the entry and the circulation desk.  Other first floor areas include the children’s area, coffee shop, graphics department, and public meeting spaces.  The second floor includes reference, fiction, and non-fiction collections, group study rooms, computer labs, information commons, and administrative offices.  Two-story spaces at the entry lobby and along the southeastern edge provide a visual connection between the building’s floors.

 

With Naperville’s ongoing and diverse growth in population, new businesses, and the evolving higher education needs just to name a few, the Library’s evolving role in the community has seen many impacts.  The 95th Street Library is a new kind of library, a social incubator for engagement and action...a sought after and preferred destination for the residents Naperville and its surrounding communities.