The New Rochelle Public Library is the centerpiece of the city’s downtown master plan. For this central civic structure, LHPA converted an automobile garage into an award winning library, with 75,000 square feet on three levels. In addition to a full scale library collection, reading areas and offices, the building contains an art gallery, a community center, auditorium for lectures, films, concerts, and plays, meeting rooms, coffee shop, media center and a children's center.
Because the library serves many community functions, it includes both public and private zones. The public area contains a lounge, an exhibition space, a coffee shop and the foyer for the new auditorium. The library portion of the building, opposite the main lobby, can be closed off by a rolling screen, leaving the public spaces accessible for nighttime or off hour use.
Internal activities and external pedestrian circulation patterns encourage extensive community use of the building. LHPA’s plan further encourages use by linking the library with major downtown shops and businesses via a pedestrian walkway.
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