Unsupported browser

For a better experience please update your browser to its latest version.

Your browser appears to have cookies disabled. For the best experience of this website, please enable cookies in your browser

We'll assume we have your consent to use cookies, for example so you won't need to log in each time you visit our site.
Learn more

First look at Mecanoo’s New York Library revamp

  • Comment

The New York Public Library has released the first images of a planned renovation of its Mid-Manhattan building, designed by Mecanoo

The Dutch practice was appointed to the $200 million job in September 2015, a year after the library cancelled controversial proposals by Foster + Partners to overhaul its flagship building in Fifth Avenue.

Foster + Partners’ plan was dropped after New York mayor Bill de Blasio expressed scepticism over the project during his 2013 election campaign. Instead, the library decided to renovate its Mid-Manhattan branch on Fifth Avenue and 40th Street. 

The schematic designs were drawn up by lead architect Mecanoo along with New York firm Beyer Blinder Belle after consultation with users and staff.

The Mid-Manhattan branch of the library opened in the 1970s in a space originally designed for a department store. It receives 1.7 million visits a year and circulates 2 million items each year.

Francine Houben, creative director at Mecanoo, said: ‘The building that was originally designed in 1914 to house the Arnold Constable department store will now really become a library.

‘The building will inspire serendipity and the discovery of all functions of a modern library.’

The plans are set to create a facility of more than 9,300m² with 35 per cent more public space than the existing library.

A new ‘long room’ will be created, including book shelving and meeting rooms, as well as a new rooftop terrace which will be open to the public.

In addition, the revamp will include a new dedicated business library, an adult learning centre, a floor dedicated to children and teenagers, plus a multipurpose space for events.

Construction is set to begin in 2017 and is expected to complete in 2019.

  • Comment

Have your say

You must sign in to make a comment

Please remember that the submission of any material is governed by our Terms and Conditions and by submitting material you confirm your agreement to these Terms and Conditions.

Links may be included in your comments but HTML is not permitted.

Related Jobs

AJ Jobs