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Central Library Renovation: Exterior View

Posted on January 9th, 2015 by Gina Perille in Johnson Building Study, Major Projects
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Part of the phase two work taking place at the Central Library in Copley Square involves the removal of the granite screens that sat in front of the first-floor windows on Boylston Street and Exeter Street. The image below shows the exterior of the Johnson building without the screens. Some of the removed granite screens will be re-used in the project’s exterior paving plan. The silver fence in the foreground is the construction fence that surrounds the site. If you look closely, you can see a compact tractor exiting the former children’s room.

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Below is a image from the library’s Flickr photostream that shows constructions workers on site outside the Johnson building in June 1972. The granite screens were in place in 1972.

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Central Library Renovation: Exhibition Gallery

Posted on January 7th, 2015 by Beth Prindle in Johnson Building Study, Major Projects
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BPL_DraftNewGalleryA new, customized gallery space — illustrated above — is planned on the first floor of the renovated Johnson building for when renovations are complete in the summer of 2016. The gallery is going to be designed to accommodate the preservation and display needs for special collections exhibitions in an easily accessible, high-traffic public space. The gallery will include four custom built-in walls of cases totaling nearly 80 linear feet of display space. Special features of the new gallery include:

  • museum-grade, fixed air exchange systems for preservation of sensitive materials
  • integrated adjustable lighting
  • high-level security features
  • modular shelving and hanging systems to accommodate a broad variety of objects and display needs
  • easily customizable and interchangeable graphics system.

The space will feature a series of themed special collections exhibitions. Content will be rotated throughout the year, with each rotation featuring 15-30 items from the library’s extraordinary holdings. Displayed items may include prints, photographs, maps, rare books, manuscripts, paintings, architectural drawings, artifacts, and other items from the library’s collections.

Central Library Renovation: Tech Central

Posted on January 5th, 2015 by admin in Johnson Building Study, Major Projects
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techcentralvbannerOne of the Central Library’s most popular services, the free computer area known as Tech Central, will reopen on the first floor of the Johnson building when the renovations are compete in the summer of 2016. The location will make it easier for patrons to see when walking through the Boylston Street entrance. The renovation makes room for 40 more computers for public use, totaling 104 available computers. Modern access equipment will be added and upgraded, and all seating will be up to ADA standards and promote inclusion in the space. Bar-height seating for laptop users will double as a place for people to relax while waiting in queue, and several large screen monitors will display the queue sequence for computers.

Two public service desks will be placed in the area in order to provide multiple points of assistance in Tech Central, each with a knowledgeable associate to help with all library-related technology questions.

Today, Tech Central is located in the Washington Room, which is on the second floor of the McKim building. View the Central Library map.

Faneuil Branch: Programming Study Meeting 2

Posted on January 3rd, 2015 by Christine Schonhart in Branches, Library Services, Major Projects
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Groups work on ideas for improvements to the Faneuil Branch.

Staff from the Boston Public Library, Tappe Architects, and the City of Boston Property and Construction Management department met with about 25 community members at the Faneuil Branch on December 18 for the second of four community meetings related to the programming study for the branch. Jeff Hoover of Tappe Architects presented the existing conditions report, then had the crowd break into three working groups to review the challenges and come up with potential solutions for the welcome zone and circulation, children and teens, and adult services areas. The existing conditions draft report and draft programming document can be found via the branch capital projects section of this website. The next community meeting will be held later this winter.

Central Library Renovation: Digitization Lab

Posted on December 15th, 2014 by Michael Colford in Johnson Building Study, Major Projects
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1211digitalrenoAn element of the second phase of the Central Library renovation includes a new space for the library’s innovative digitization lab, where a team of skilled photographers shoot both the BPL’s collection and collections from libraries across Massachusetts as part of the Library for the Commonwealth program. When construction is completed, this lab will be located on the lower level of the Johnson building along with partners-in-residence, the Digital Public Library of America and the Internet Archive. Viewing windows and digital monitors will allow visitors to see the interesting work taking place in the lab, and the collaborative work done by these three groups will be well served with a shared space.