Library Buildings

Planning and Building Libraries

This is the premier site for library building on the Internet. It provides general planning guides, guides for planning specific types of libraries, and information on such topics as lighting, security, health, automation, and barrier-free design.

Public Library Space Needs: A Planning Outline by Anders Dahlgren

"This outline is intended to help librarians and library trustees determine whether to initiate a facilities planning process. By completing it, librarians and trustees can obtain a general estimate of their library's space needs based on their library's underlying service goals. With that estimate, planners can assess the adequacy of their library's existing overall square footage and determine if a more detailed study is called for." Published in 1998 when the author was a consultant at the Division for Libraries, Technology, and Community Learning, this continues to be a standard resource.

ALA's Building Libraries and Library Additions: A Selected Annotated Bibliography

'This fact sheet provides references to the tools, resources, and advice to help you manage your library building project, whether large or small. " It includes links to some resources that are online.

ADA Accessibility Guidelines for Buildings and Facilities

See in particular Point 8 on Libraries.

Placemaking Resources 

This is a site to browse for fresh ideas and a creative perspective. Suggestions range from the inexpensive to the costly, from what one person can do to what the whole community can do; from the immediate and practical to the visionary. Signage, security, tips, background articles are just some of the resources to explore. Whether you want to make your current space more inviting and effective or are planning for a new building, stop and look at this. From the Project for Public Spaces.

Creating a User-Friendly Library with Signage

A special topic that merits attention even when you're not building or remodeling the library, but is certainly valuable then. The site, developed by Ellen Bosman, defines seven components of a user-friendly library and then focuses on signage, her mission being "To heighten awareness of library resources, improve library services, facilitate library safety, and assist patrons in library usage through collection and furniture arrangement and signage."

Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED)

This site provides helpful information about the LEED rating system.  It includes resources, educational materials and other resources to assist with learning about green building.  The Rosemary Garfoot Public Library in Cross Plains, is the first LEED-certified library in Wisconsin.

Resources for Space Planning in Libraries

Whether you are planning a new building or renovating an old one, you will need to develop a detailed space plan that takes into account the actual space needs to meet your library's mission and service plan. Library space planning expert, Linda Demmers of Libris Design has put together a guide to some of the best resources and tools for library space planning as well an an introduction to the lingo.

Architecture and Design Firms vendors at WLA 2016