Colin Drake, AIA,
Louisville Free Public Library Middletown Branch | Louisville, Kentucky
The new Middletown branch replaces a space that was nearly twice as large, yet retains a similar level of service. The redesign focused on maximizing collection space while carefully integrating a variety of reading and meeting spaces to encourage patron engagement. The solution incorporates the existing building’s geometry of pitched roofs and arched clerestory windows by vaulting the main collection space to expand the spread of daylight and unify the two main areas. Closed rooms are grouped together and clad with reflective marker glass, further increasing the perception of the space’s size. A children’s activity wall and play space animate the youth area.
JRA’s deep collaboration with library leaders informed the final layout and detailing. Cleanly detailed, purpose-built millwork organizes the compact staff space and self-check stations to ensure functional convenience and a unified appearance, while signature pendant lighting sinuously draws patrons through the building.