[URBAN NOTE] “Toronto is making a big push to upgrade its libraries”
blogTO’s Derek Flack highlights the ongoing upgrading of not a few of the branches of the Toronto Public Library system.
Perhaps the most stunning of these upgrades is happening at the TPL’s Albion Branch, where architecture firm Perkins + Will have designed a stunning new building immediately adjacent to the existing branch that dates back to 1973.
By using the parking lot as the site of the replacement, it was possible to keep the original branch in operation throughout the construction process, which is entering its final stage. The new building is expected to open in fall of this year.
When it does, it’ll feature a far more robust computer area, a technology centre complete with a 3-D printer, a specially designed kids area, and a social space being dubbed the “urban living room.”
Similar upgrades are coming to another branch that’s seen better days. The Raymond Moriyama-designed North York Central branch is still a stunning building with its seven storey atrium, but being the second busiest branch in the system, it was deemed a priority to upgrade its features and some of the finer points of the design.
The list goes on. No less than seven branches are currently undergoing renovation efforts, including Agincourt, Eglinton Square, Runnymede, St. Clair/Silverthorn, and Wychwood. In each case, the goal is the same: to modify the existing space to serve more as a community hub rather than merely a quiet place to study or read.