A critical component of the Cleveland Heights|University Heights Library’s redevelopment strategy was the implementation of a new Model of Service for the library, and simplifying the use of the library resources by the patrons. The solution eliminated the Service Desks and carefully placed information kiosks throughout the library. The kiosks are easily identified by patrons and staffed by librarians so that information requests are quickly answered. Additionally, librarians outfitted with handheld devices roam the library providing direction and assistance to patrons. Further efficiencies were found by eliminating the check out desk and providing self check stations throughout the library, with modest assistance, even the most infrequent library patron is able to use these devices. These changes resulted in the library processing 40% more requests for assistance in 30% less time, and subsequent to the renovation, the library has ranked in the top 5 nationally for circulation and patron assistance.
The addition|renovation project provided, a cafe and reading lounge, large and small meeting spaces, classroom space, performing arts space, visual arts space as well as a parent’s center with toy lending library. All of these changes occurred through a dynamic process of community engagement and supported the Director’s Vision to expand the traditional role of a Community Library to create a Cultural Arts + Learning Center for the community.
Heights Library - Noble Road Branch
studioTECHNE undertook a system wide branch maintenance and repair survey in 2007 for the CHUH Library System.. Each branch was reviewed and a 10 year plan for maintenance developed. In addition to accessibility and maintenance|repair items, the The Noble Road Branch also required new finishes and furniture. The library took advantage of this opportunity to study the plan of the building and seeing flaws to the layout and design building that compromised the model for service, requested a study of plan options.
studioTECHNE worked with the library and replanned the interior of the building so that public areas of the two story structure could be serviced by three librarians, the cramped children’s area was relocated to the lower level and expanded and the first floor was opened up for adults and computer areas. A dedicated teen room was placed separated from the rest of the library, but in a location where it could be directly observed from the staff workroom.
Heights Knowledge and Innovation Center
The financial investment involved in the construction of a major library building is a commitment to a structure and its design that will serve the community for several decades. Under normal conditions, a new building should be designed based on the needs that might be realized over a period of at least twenty years. In reality, most buildings must serve for a much longer period of time. In order for the building to continue to function effectively, the structure and its layout must incorporate numerous elements of flexibility and adaptability. The application of advanced technologies and new methods to deliver library services are changing daily. These changes impact how teaching and educations services are delivered, making it imperative that new structures address the matters of flexibility and adaptability in design and construction. These considerations formed the design parameters for the new community technology lab and presentation space for the Cleveland Heights University Heights Library.
North Canton Public Library
North Canton Public Library is a unique community asset - Library, Art Gallery + Studio, Literacy Center, Essential Community Partner. Book circulation is at an all-time high, and the library is struggling to find sufficient program space to support the increased demand by the community for meeting, and program spaces. studioTECHNE designed a community based discovery process in collaboration with the Library to engage the citizens of North Canton to identify the community’s priorities and develop a comprehensive plan to position the library as the focal point of lifelong learning in North Canton. We led the community through a series of focus groups and developed a comprehensive list of priorities and needs. Of highest priority are community meeting spaces, tutoring rooms, dedicated children’s program space, teen space, and an entrepreneurship center and maker space where community members can explore business startup and proto-typing opportunities.
Analysis of the existing building discovered enough underutilized space so that all the new program space requested by the community approximately 35% more space was accommodated by a 6,000 square foot addition to the building. The design developed for the library moves all the public gathering and meeting spaces to the street side of the building, allowing the building to embrace the community and provide an exciting, lively presence on one of North Canton’s busiest streets. The master plan developed for the library meets all the communities needs and positions a beloved community institution at the center of community life for years to come.
Notre Dame College Library
studioTECHNE has completed programming, conceptual design, three dimensional visualization, and budgeting for the renovations and additions to the Clara Fritzsche Library and Classroom Expansion for the campus of Notre Dame College. The building project will change the current under-utilized library into a center for learning and student life. Central to the design of this 24-hour building, will be the first floor commons area where students will meet to study in the Falcon Cafe and coffee shop, access online content on the wireless network, or adjacent public computers. The Commons is also home to the school book store, the student art gallery, a large reading room and small group study rooms. The collection is distributed across the remainder of the first floor and lower levels along with a series of classrooms and meeting rooms. The second floor is a dedicated learning center. Here students utilize the computer and language labs and connect to their colleagues across the world in the media presentation room. The renovation takes the opportunity to update the existing building systems and provide a LEED Silver model learning environment for the College.
This project seeks to understand the material possibilities of the relationship between the planned city and the existing tectonic bodies, by exploring, responding, and affecting space through a distributed system of abstracted interpretations. The urban scale is understood not as the result of the placement of a collection of objects and their residual spaces, but as occurring as the reinterpretation of the interdependencies of the urban and natural fabrics of the city. Additionally, the ambiguous juxtaposition of the current Asplund Library and Library Annexes, to the glacial esker is explored by connecting the two with a folded surface that bridges and inhabits the interstitial spaces of the library structures. This surface creates a new infrastructure which is able to respond to the movement of people between, over around the existing buildings and direct wandering past the buildings up to the observatory.
The new pathways and reinterpretation of exterior building forms allows for variations of spatial experience over time inside the new building. Critical to the experience of the Asplund building is ensuring the central rotunda experience is the same from the entrance at Sveavagen or coming from the new addition. In either case, the level of entry for the Asplund building will be the third floor. In the new additions, effective circulation of books via automated equipment and efficient travel paths for staff are matched with open and visually exciting clusters of reading areas. Zones of public interaction are positioned along the pathways and voids created by varying layers of columns and shifting floor plates that allow for directed movement, play, and exploration.