The library, which for so long served as the single nexus of information and learning the world over, has had to adapt to the advances and conveniences of the digital—and search engine—age. On the front lines of this adaptation have stood (arm in arm with librarians, of course) architects and designers, who have helped mastermind new ideas about what a library should be equipped to do in this brave new world.
Luckily, there are brilliant design minds working this out across the U.S. and in Canada. Yesterday, The American Institute of Architects released a list of the seven winners of the 2016 AIA/ALA Library Building Awards. The award, bestowed annually, celebrates excellence in design, with special attention given to projects that strive for sustainability alongside efforts to create a new typology for the modern library.
Take a look at each building below.
1. Will Bruder Architects; Billings Public Library — Billings, Montana
2. SOM; Chicago Public Library — Chicago, Illinois
3. VJAA; Hennepin County Walker Library — Minneapolis, Minnesota
4. Gould Evans; Lawrence Public Library Renovation and Expansion — Lawrence, Kansas
5. The Miller Hull Partnership; Renton Public Library — Renton, Washington
6. Snøhetta and Zeidler Partnership Architects; Ryerson University Student Learning Centre — Toronto, Ontario
7. Bohlin Cywinski Jackson; Sawyer Library — Williamstown, Massachusetts
∙ 2016 AIA/ALA Library Building Awards [American Institute of Architects]
∙ The Library Whisperer [Curbed]