Boston Public Library
Strategic Planning

The BPL Compass

Category Archives: Major Projects

Jamaica Plain branch design process begins

Posted on April 17th, 2014 by Christine Schonhart in Branches, Library Services, Major Projects
Tags:

On April 9th, the Library, architects from Utile, Inc, and project managers from the City’s Property and Construction Management team joined over 50 community members in Jamaica Plain to begin discussions on the design for a renovated Jamaica Plain branch of the Boston Public Library. Located at 12 Sedgwick Street, the branch opened in 1911 and the last major interior renovation was in 1963. In 2013 a program study was completed with the goals of renovation to include accessibility, expanded spaces for all ages, art gallery space, and a rejuvenated multi-purpose room. The next meeting of the community group will be on May 21st at the Jamaica Plain branch at 6pm. Join the conversation in person or online. All meeting minutes and presentations will be posted here: http://www.bpl.org/branches/branch_capital_projects.htm#jamaicaplain_library

 

Central Library Renovation: Community Reading Area

Posted on March 26th, 2014 by Gina Perille in Johnson Building Study, Library Services, Major Projects
Tags: , ,

BPL2ndfloorcolorgrid

A colorized floor plan of the second floor. Boylston Street is at the bottom of the image.

The second floor of the renovated Johnson Building will include a community reading area with comfortable seating as well as work space for individual and collaborative efforts. In the accompanying image, the community reading area is in the center, bottom. A large, arched window will bring in light from Boylston Street into the reading area as will the skylights in the Johnson Building’s center atrium. Nonfiction collections will be on both sides of the community reading area and near the elevators. The second floor also includes a new children’s library (multi-colored section top right), teen central (gray section top left), and reference area (purple section middle left).

Central Library Renovation: Community Learning Center

Posted on March 24th, 2014 by ggifford@private.bpl.org in Johnson Building Study, Library Services, Major Projects
Tags: , , , , ,

CommunityLearning Bienvenido a la Biblioteca!

The Community Learning space on the renovated Mezzanine level of the Johnson Building will be a lively, open, and welcoming conversation spot for patrons who are learning English, preparing for citizenship exams, or who enjoy reading, studying, and practicing foreign languages. The library’s World Language books, test preparation materials, and literacy collection will be arranged in the surrounding space to support literacy programs, small group tutoring, and conversation circles.

The newly designed space will have three study rooms perfect for tutoring sessions and small group conversation.

Godetevi la vostra nuova libreria!

Central Library Renovation: Exterior Improvements

Posted on March 18th, 2014 by David Leonard in Johnson Building Study, Library Services, Major Projects
Tags: , , ,

Two of the Central Library Renovation Project’s key goals for master planning were to: “connect the library to the city,” and “to create an inviting first impression.” To put it mildly, these are unquestionably weak spots of the original Philip Johnson design, and goals which set high expectations for the renovations on the exterior of the building.

Components of the exterior renovation, now entering their final design stages include removal of almost all of the defensive granite screens on Boylston, Exeter and Blagden Streets, some of which may have a new but subtler life as paving elements. Additional features will include remodeled entrances, more energy efficient and transparent glass, with a less imposing framing structure, exterior furniture (including bike racks) and signage allowing the library experience to truly start on the outside of the building. Another creative proposal involves the use of high-limbed trees, to add a natural counterpoint to and reduce the severity of the building, all the while retaining appropriate levels of symmetry with the McKim building.

The planning team looks forward to continue its conversations with the Boston Landmarks Commission, who have jurisdiction over certain pieces of the project, and with neighborhood groups such as the Neighborhood Association of the Back Bay (NAAB) and many others. After all, statistics tell us that even today, in addition to users who consider the Central Library their main branch, 47% of all systemwide users also use the Central Library in addition to their neighborhood branch.

Rendering of the Johnson Building landscaping. Inset image: a view of Boylston Street from Exeter Corner.

Renderings of the Johnson Building exterior improvements. Inset image: a view depicting Boylston Street from vantage point of Exeter Street.

 

Dudley Branch entrance update

Posted on March 18th, 2014 by Christine Schonhart in Branches, Major Projects
Tags:

Dudley entrance

The first section of signage installed over the front doors of the Dudley Branch.

Work on improvements to the Dudley Branch of the Boston Public Library continue this week with the installation of the marquee signage on the building.

While this work is on-going, patrons may be asked to use a side entrance to get into the building. We thank you for your patience with this.

Also included in this project: new paint in the lobby, security cameras, improved lighting on the interior and exterior, and landscaping.