Library! at Cole and Ustick

Boise, Idaho

How do we create a garden within a concrete jungle?

FFA worked in close collaboration with the City of Boise and provided presentations to several public forums as part of the process to achieve a design that met all of the goals the community envisioned. In so doing, the programming elements of the Library! at Cole & Ustick have been used as prototypical design criteria for other Boise branches.

Located on what was a neglected retail strip, the new facility serves as a catalyst for revitalizing the surrounding area. The dense landscaping around the building acts as a shell, wrapping a natural habitat around the library while forming a bridge between the neighborhood and building.

The library serves as a community living room, offering a warm and inviting venue for cultural and educational events year-long. Key spaces include meeting rooms for the community, which are available for after-hours gatherings and events, and a lounge seating area with a welcoming hearth. The building design maximizes daylighting, utilizing a 25-foot-high glass curtain wall as well as a series of skylights over the main reading room.

Year Completed:
2009
Size:
15,000 sf
Construction Cost:
$4.3 million
Project Contact:
Ian Gelbrich, AIA, LEED AP
Associate Partner, Civic Market Lead
Recognitions:

LEED Gold Certified

Symbolism
Wrapping Landscape
Activity Zoning
Program Parti

Transparency and Art
Exterior Expression of the Hearth
Stainless Steel Tiles
Connection to Nature
Folded Wood Plane of the Hearth
Children’s Play Area