Leers Weinzapfel Associates has completely renovated the Boston Public Library’s Roslindale Branch Library for 21st century use, while respecting and restoring its signature design elements. A spirited example of mid-century modernism, the library’s unique circular domed space and semi-circular form were the springboard for its re-invention. A new entry façade provides accessibility and shelter marked by a colorful pattern of multi-colored terra cotta baguettes which echo the diversity of the neighborhood and the book resources within. An intimate and protected reading garden occupies the small space between the curved volume and the busy street. Inside the library, a semi-circular open reading space provides greater overall visibility, and a new “reading maze” housing children’s books, peaks young visitors’ curiosity. As both a “community living room” and an “information hub”, this restoration serves as a vibrant piece of the city, restoring the old structure and celebrating the new.
“Our branch libraries are neighborhood treasures—as hubs of learning and community,” said Boston Mayor Michelle Wu at the library’s opening. “The Roslindale branch library renovation is a true reflection of our community…our families have this space to meet, read, learn, and play once more.”