The schematic designs call for tearing down the 1950s front portion of the Central Library and gutting the 1979 addition. New space would be built where the front half used to stand, but there would be more lawn space for outdoor activities, as well as an outdoor reading garden. The building would have about 103,000 square feet, with almost 50,000 from the existing structure and the remainder new construction.
The front entrance would lead to a central area – called the marketplace – with computers, new reading materials and more. Glass panels would allow people to see into the second and third floors. The children’s library would be to the left, with a connected outdoor program space. To the right would be a 308-seat auditorium, other event space and a café.
An open computer lab and computer learning center would also be available on the first floor, as would the “technology petting zoo,” which would allow customers to test out various devices. The North Carolina Room would take up a large portion of the second floor and would be given state-of-the-art climate control. Teen Central would be in one area of the floor, and administrative offices in another. Maker Space would also be provided, where people could come to create anything from a traditional craft to a video.
The general collection would be on the third floor, where windows would provide surrounding views of the city and a covered roof terrace of Pilot Mountain to the north. The parking lot under the back of the building would remain