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January 24, 2020

City council unveils new Ottawa Public Library design

The City of Ottawa in Canada has unveiled the architectural design for the $192.9m Ottawa Public Library - Library and Archives Canada Joint Facility.

The City of Ottawa in Canada has unveiled the architectural design for the $192.9m Ottawa Public Library – Library and Archives Canada Joint Facility.

Diamond Schmitt Architects and KWC Architects designed the 216,000ft² joint facility. It will be located on 555 Albert Street, between Pimisi Station and Bronson Avenue.

A 3D model, video walk-through and renderings were revealed by Diamond Schmitt Architects principal Donald Schmitt, who is serving as the project’s lead architect.

The Ottawa Public Library – Library and Archives Canada Joint Facility is set to open to the public in late 2024.

The facility will be a resource centre, providing visitors with access to a diverse national collection. It will enhance visibility and accessibility to Canada’s cultural history.

The joint facility witnessed the collaboration of municipal and federal institutions for its development.

Canada Minister of Infrastructure and Communities Catherine McKenna said: “This historic collaboration between the Ottawa Public Library and Library and Archives Canada will push for unique works of art, programmes and exhibition spaces.

“This design reveal is the next step in creating a world-class destination in the nation’s capital that residents of Ottawa, Canadians and visitors from all over the world can come to experience.”

Input from local citizens has shaped the library’s design, including the entrances, interiors and inclusive sustainable features throughout the design development.

City of Ottawa Mayor Jim Watson said: “After completing an extensive public consultation process, we celebrated a major milestone by revealing the architects’ stunning design for our new Ottawa Public Library – Library and Archives Canada joint facility.

“The inspirational design showcases how this facility is more than just a building with books; it will be a welcoming gathering space for us all.”

The facility’s shape holds a similarity to the Ottawa River and has been designed to connect with the city’s history and beauty.

The library’s large windows and top floors give panoramic views of the Ottawa River and Gatineau Hills.

The facility will feature a children’s discovery centre, a genealogy centre, a central town hall, reading rooms, meeting rooms, a creative centre and a café.

Construction will begin next year.

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