Auburn Public Library
The Auburn Public Library has been a landmark in downtown Auburn since 1904. Designed by William Miller of Portland, it is a romantic Richardsonian building with turrets, dormers and Flemish bond brickwork. Later additions and renovations had been made, but by the 1990’s the need for a substantial addition was apparent. A 1998 study by Nolan Lushington identified a need for more than double the space available.
The final design triples the area of the library to 30,000 square feet. An extensive new addition provides open plan space arranged around a central browsing area along a north/south axis. The browsing collection, Children’s Room and fiction are housed in the addition, and a periodicals reading room and program room occupy the original building. The second floor houses Reference and non-fiction, with the administrative offices and the Historical Collection in the old building. Meeting rooms and a cafe are on the ground floor.
The exterior recalls and defers to the architecture of the original building. A new arcaded entrance opens to Spring Street, and the Children’s Room wing presents a playful response to the original façade on Court Street.
(Richard Smith was the project architect for Stahl Associates and Burt Hill)