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February 21, 2020

St. Joseph County Public Library Breaks Ground

St. Joseph County Public Library Breaks Ground

Today the St. Joseph County Public Library of South Bend, Indiana, broke ground for its new main library renovation and expansion project.

The new St. Joseph County Public Library will upon completion in 2021 provide a fully renovated 90,000-square-foot library and a new 40,000-square-foot Community Learning Center. Occupying a full city block in downtown South Bend, the two buildings will define a community garden. The renovated building will maintain its current entrance on South Main Street and provide the community with an expanded children's collection on the ground floor; a reading room and commons on the second floor; and a dedicated local history and genealogy collection on the third floor. Clad in buff brick, punctuated with simply detailed arches and piers, the new Community Learning Center creates a new second entrance to the library at the corner of Wayne Street and South Michigan Street, providing direct access from South Bend's active commercial corridor. The Community Learning Center will add resources including classrooms; offices; an event space with a hexagonal laylight; a multipurpose room for lectures, computer training, and banquets; and a 250-seat auditorium. The new library is principally funded by St. Joseph County, the St. Joseph County Community Foundation, and the City of South Bend.

"Building a new and renovated public library is an act of civic optimism," said Alexander P. Lamis of Robert A.M. Stern Architects. "Here in South Bend we are creating a new generation of library as a testament to St. Joseph County's commitment to life-long learning and economic development."

The project is the largest construction project the St. Joseph County Public Library has undertaken in 60 years. Partners Robert A.M. Stern, Alex P. Lamis, and Melissa DelVecchio led the design effort. Arkos Design serves as the architect of record. Click here for more information.

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