Featured Illustration (above): Southwest perspective of Round Rock’s planned new main library, which would be one block north of the existing library. Image: PGAL
By Edmond Ortiz
Round Rock (Travis County)–The city recently unveiled a design for its new public library, a 65,000-square-foot, three-story building with a 300-space parking garage.
The firm PGAL produced the design for the new library, which will be bordered by Austin and Liberty avenues, and Sheppard and Lampasas streets.
The new library will have classrooms on the first floor, study rooms on the second and third floors, a quiet work/study area n the third floor, and outdoor spaces on each level.
An aerial perspective of the new Round Rock library and garage. Image: PGAL
The site plan includes space for children’s story time rooms, early childhood learning areas, technology areas, and flexible spaces for activities, crafts, and maker/collaboration.
There will be a first-floor public courtyard with an artificial turf lawn and lounge furniture, outdoor tables, chairs and benches.
Festive lighting, as described by a city press release, will be strung between the library and garage to lend an air of accessibility to visitors, employees and passers-by.
The rooftop will feature a discovery garden with masonry tiles, sustainably harvested wood-decking modules, rubberized play surface tiles and artificial turf.
The rooftop garden will be used for library programs and community events. A screen on the parking garage will accommodate movie nights and community gatherings.
Construction will be funded with $23.2 million in bond funds originally approved by voters in 2013. The following year, the city issued bonds for land acquisition, design and engineering.
But in 2015, City Council opted to wait to officially choose a site for the new library. The city initially considered building the structure at 500 N. Mays St., but in 2019 the city approved $4.2 million for the purchase of land on the block directly north of the existing 11,000-square-foot library, which was built in 1980.
City leaders have said a new larger library will accommodate its planned expansion of core services, and meeting and program spaces.
Site plan for the planned new Round Rock library and garage. Image: City of Round Rock
“This new library building represents the future of Round Rock and honors the past,” Library Director Michelle Cervantes said in the news release. “It is a symbol of community strength and unity. It is a place where all are welcome.”
The city estimates a bid date for the library/garage package in October 2020, and completing construction in November 2023.
VBX members may track this project using ID number: 2017-595B.
Edmond Ortiz is a lifelong San Antonian and a 20-plus-year veteran in local journalism, He previously worked full-time at the San Antonio Express-News, and has been freelancing for outlets such as the Rivard Report.