Boulder hires N.Y. architecture firm to consult on library

BOULDER — The city of Boulder has hired New York-based Work Architecture Co. to consult on development of plans for the first phase of a new branch library in north Boulder.

Phase one of the North Boulder Library project includes site analysis, community engagement and preliminary planning of library spaces for programming and activities.

The contract with Work Architecture provides an option to renew for phase two, which will include design and construction of the new library.

The project is funded largely by the 2017 renewal of the Community, Culture and Safety Tax. The estimated cost of the project is $6.7 million, and the amount funded through the tax will be $5 million.

“We’re thrilled to have WORKac onboard,” David Farnan, the city’s director of Library and the Arts, said in a prepared statement. “Their desire to engage the whole community early in the process as well as their innovative and creative focus on the intersection of urban, rural and natural settings along with their careful integration of sustainability are a great fit for our project. … WORKac is both internationally acclaimed for their landmark projects and well versed in branch library design similar to our project.”

Public engagement will kick off with an event outside The Crowd Collective, Friday, Aug. 3. Details of all public-engagement opportunities, including the ongoing collection of online input, can be found online at www.boulderlibrary.org/nobo-branch.

Work Architecture was founded in 2003. It was named the number one design firm in the United States in 2017 by Architect Magazine because of its portfolio of projects that are “playful, colorful and well detailed.” Some of its internationally recognized projects include the New Holland Island Cultural Center in St. Petersburg, Russia; the Blaffer Art Museum in Houston, Texas; the Children’s Museum of the Arts in Manhattan, N.Y.; the Edible Schoolyard at P.S. 2016 in Brooklyn, N.Y.; the Kew Gardens Hills Library in Queens, N.Y.; and the Weifang Campus Library in Weifang, China.