First of five new public libraries opens in Washington, D.C.
The District of Columbia Public Library opened the new 22,000 square-foot Benning Neighborhood Library on Monday. It is the first of five new libraries to open this year and one of two designed by Davis Brody Bond Adeas. In addition to celebrating the library’s opening, the event showcased the district’s rapidly improving library system.
The new $12 million library, targeted for LEED Silver Certification, houses community space on the first level with library functions above connected by a staircase. Nestled into the site to maintain the scale of the mostly residential buildings around it, the building incorporates many sustainable features including a vegetated roof, solar and daylight controls; and extensive use of recycled and renewable materials.
At the building’s opening ceremony, Chief Librarian Ginnie Cooper said, “New buildings only scratch the surface of the library’s transformation. More people are making their way to the D.C. library for the improved book collections, the great author talks and workshops, and the robust Internet connection. We are excited that people are becoming aware of the district’s top-notch library.”
Additional Libraries will also open this year in nearby Anacostia (April 26), Deanwood (summer), Georgetown (October) and Tenley (December). The district is also moving forward with two new libraries designed by London-based architect David Adjaye.