Designs for new downtown Guelph library unveiled

The Guelph Public Library board of directors has approved the schematic design for the new main branch in the Baker District redevelopment project.

In a news release on Tuesday, the City of Guelph said the drawings illustrate the basic elements and layout of the design, which will be refined and finalized through subsequent design phases.

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“Understanding the vision for the Baker District redevelopment and based on community input we’ve designed a striking, contemporary building that draws on the history of Guelph, and at the same time, catapults us into the future,” said Duncan Bates, associate with Diamond Schmitt Architects.

“This new library will provide tremendous social and economic benefits to the broader community of Guelph and the downtown neighbourhood.”

The former parking lot and adjacent properties are being flipped into a new district that will feature resident units, commercial space, public parking along with the new library.

Guelph city council approved $67.1 million for the new library in September 2019.

The parking lot was closed to vehicles earlier this month and construction is expected to begin sometime next year.

The city says the redevelopment will revitalize Guelph’s downtown and improve the city’s entire economic and social prosperity.

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“We’re really impressed by the thoughtful and creative design that Diamond Schmitt Architects have developed for our new central library,” said library CEO Steve Kraft.

“As a Guelphite himself, Duncan Bates has led the design of a building that fits Guelph’s distinctive identity and incorporates the desires of our community as heard throughout the extensive engagement we did. We’re very excited to move onto detailed design and start building this community gathering space.”

© 2021 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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