(Down)town Center

Glenwood Springs Branch Library

Glenwood Springs, CO

The Garfield County Library District created a partnership with the City of Glenwood Springs, the Downtown Development Authority, and Colorado Mountain College (CMC) to create a significant and unique development in historic downtown Glenwood Springs.  The facility consists of a 7,500 square foot public plaza for community activation, structured parking for approximately 300 cars, a 10,000 SF space for classrooms, administrative functions and gallery for CMC, as well as a 14,000 SF Branch Library with an additional 4,000 SF of space allocated for future build out.

The design of the two story masonry building celebrates the community’s special setting at the entrance to Glenwood Canyon, rich context of masonry architecture, and significant historical context.   The building’s expansive storefront windows allow the library to participate in the downtown as a major retail anchor.  The generous allocation of storefront within the library space allows daylight to penetrate deeply into the building as well as facilitating panoramic views of the adjacent hills.  The landscape slopes longitudinally along the site towards the Colorado River, one block away to the north, allowing convenient access to the below grade parking from the north while concealing the cars from the pedestrian experience.

The building has been designed to facilitate a very unique relationship between the Library and CMC so the collection and program spaces can be shared, yet maintained independent of one another.  The building is intended to serve as a community cultural center offering resources to scholarly investigations and civic programs, as well as providing unique spaces to encourage young readers.

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