New Central Library
710 W. César Chávez St.
- December 2016: Building construction substantially completed
- May 2017: Grand Opening Ceremony scheduled
What is a "library for the future"?
- Flexible & Blended Spaces
- Focus on electronic delivery of information
- State-of-the-art technologies
- Community gathering place promoting a mixture of lively and contemplative spaces
- Collections displayed to encourage discovery
What will the New Central Library offer?
- Reading porches and an indoor reading room overlooking Shoal Creek and Lady Bird Lake
- Landmark public gathering atrium space adjacent to Shoal Creek
- Library café with outdoor dining adjacent to Second St. and Shoal Creek Park
- Recycled Reads gift boutique
- Gallery space featuring local and national artists
- Abundant bicycle parking
- A permanent exhibit of beloved puppets created by the Austin Public Library
September 2016 Update
The New Central Library remained a very busy construction site throughout the month of September. Ongoing work includes but is certainly not limited to street and sidewalk construction, installation of flagstone and brick pavers, installation of stone, mesquite and oak flooring and carpet, installation of wood paneling and other ceiling finishes, completing the decking on the wood, interior bridges and installing glass on the glass interior bridges. On the Shoal Creek Greenbelt side of the New Central Library, the construction of stone, retaining walls and stairs are being completed while landscaping lights at boulders and curbs are being installed along the Cesar Chavez Plaza. Overhead doors are in the process of being installed at the loading docks, raised access flooring is being installed in the Special Event Forum, guardrails are being placed around the roof garden, millwork is being installed in the Teens Room and the Craft Area of the Children’s Room is nearing completion. Taping, floating and final painting of walls is now underway on all levels of the building. Finally, as the scaffolding is being disassembled at the atrium metal wall panels, a boom lift has been moved inside the building so that the installation of the Art in Public Places portion of the project, a wall-mounted sculpture eighteen feet long, may begin.
Art in Public Places
On January 6, 2014 the Art in Public Places Panel approved the Final Design for the New Central Library Art Project titled Birds by Christian Moeller, a world-class, innovative public artist whose works often incorporate robotic elements. Birds is a 37’ kinetic sculpture resembling a gigantic cuckoo clock with a swinging pendulum which will be wall-mounted in the atrium.
An accompanying LED animation screen featuring a black bird will be mounted on the 5th level. A computer program will drive the behavior and gestures of the bird using an artificial life system. This work is inspired in part by Austin’s relation to its resident grackle population and by the strong presence black birds have in mythology and literature.
New Central Library Contacts
Project Manager, Public Works
Facilities Process Manager, Austin Public Library