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Library Design Case Studies

Opening the Book's experienced designers provide space planning and design services for all sizes of libraries. Browse through the example case studies below ... it’s always great to learn from the way that others go about tackling their challenges.

Llanrwst Library
Llanrwst Library Design Case Study

In 2020 Conwy CBC had an opportunity to provide a new community hub for rural Conwy when the building which had been the Glasdir Business and Conference Centre in Llanrwst became available. The existing library, just across the road,…

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Public access computers
Gateshead Archive

Opening the Book refurbished Gateshead Central Lending Library, including children’s and young adult areas, in 2009 so we were delighted to return to complete the work with a transformation of the computer and reference areas into the new Gateshead Archive.

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Gateshead Central Library - MakerPlace
Gateshead Central Library MakerPlace

Makerspaces need a special ambience, not to mention sufficient storage space and work surfaces for all the equipment, collaborative activities and presentations. Opening the Book created a successful MakerPlace in Gateshead Central Library's existing Sound Gallery.

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Leeds City Council Story Buses
Leeds City Council Story Buses

It was an exciting prospect for us to be invited to work with Leeds City Council to design their new mobile children’s service vehicles. This was a first for Opening the Book and gave us an opportunity to explore how…

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Lichfield Library
Lichfield Library at St Marys Centre

Opening the Book first visited St Mary’s Church, Lichfield, in 2016 to consider the feasibility of the library being part of a larger refurbishment project. The space was not, on first impression, very promising – it was dark, with low…

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Werneth High School Library
Werneth High School

Werneth School in Stockport has been in the fortunate position of being completely relocated into a new purpose-built home on the same site. As part of this, Opening the Book was invited by the Deputy Head, Alyson Littlewood, and School…

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Tables and shelving
Kingham Hill School

Transforming the old chapel in a 19th century school into a contemporary, practical library was an exciting challenge for our design team this summer. The brief was to create a highly flexible layout which would accommodate all the usual activities…

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Attractive shelving
Southwater One Library

A dramatic building, a new landscaped development and a council ambitious to change its relationship with its customers – what an opportunity! Opening the Book worked with libraries, Customer Services, architects and contractors to create a completely new kind of…

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Looking down on Redbridge Library
Redbridge Central Library

A hard-working library with pressures on space was transformed through a major rethink. Capacities were increased through better space planning across several floors but the library feels more open and light because of the skilful layout in relation to the…

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Seating area, Risca Palace Library
Risca Palace Library

A much-loved but derelict cinema was reclaimed and extended as the Library and Customer Services Centre. Opening the Book brought contemporary style mixed with a celebration of cinematic heritage to deliver immediate appeal in the high street location. Upstairs we…

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Thame Library bookshelves and reading table
Thame Library

This market town had campaigned for a new library for 20 years so expectations were high. Residents, councillors and staff all supported our proposal to move to a discovery layout and retail-style presentation in the new library. The results in…

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Nottingham Trent University IT
Nottingham Trent University

The 4th floor of Boots has always been the most heavily used computer space in the university – and it showed. Opening the Book used colour and style to create a more pleasant study environment while actually increasing the number…

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