By Alan Butler AIA
Senior Principal, TLCD Architecture
Nearly a decade ago, I typed up a one-page list of things to look for in the libraries we were visiting with a stakeholder group from Napa Valley College. That list morphed into a workbook called Touring Libraries, first printed in 2005. Thirty thousand photographs later, and after touring libraries throughout the United States and Europe, a new book called Experiencing Libraries has been born. This edition was published through the online service Blurb and will soon be available in hard bound, soft cover, and e-book versions.
When non-designers visit other libraries it is often difficult for them to understand and articulate the qualities and functions of the spaces they are visiting. This book guides them though the library from the site, to the front door and to all facets of the library. In addition to basic library space uses it includes sections on such topics as community rooms, way finding, loading docks and HVAC systems. The book is helpful both as a tour guide and as a tool for programming and plan evaluation. Written with library programmer Will Baty, whom TLCD Architecture has worked with on 4 of our recent library projects, we hope to find an institutional publisher such as the American Library Association in order to share it with a wider audience.
You can preview or purchase a copy at the TLCD Bookstore: