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Two D.C. public libraries win prestigious architecture awards

The local chapter of the American Institute of Architects recognizes the West End and Cleveland Park libraries

The West End Library
Ron Ngiam Photography, courtesy of D.C. Public Library

The Washington chapter of the American Institute of Architects (AIA) has awarded a pair of neighborhood libraries two key architecture awards, D.C. Public Library (DCPL) announced Thursday. The West End Library and the Cleveland Park Library, both located in Northwest, have been awarded the AIA’s D.C. Chapter Design and Urban Catalyst awards, respectively.

“These awards acknowledge the work of good design in creating spaces that support the idea that libraries can be places of transformation,” said Richard Reyes-Gavilan, the director of DCPL, in a statement. “These new libraries will please, serve and inspire their communities for decades to come.” The West End Library opened in 2017 and the Cleveland Park Library opened last year. The awards come as DCPL updates its neighborhood and flagship libraries.

Per a release from DCPL:

The West End Library is the 17th library to be renovated or rebuilt and the first to be part of a residential development in the District. Located at 2310 L St. NW, the library’s interior was designed by CORE architecture + design, a Georgetown-based firm.

Located at 3310 Connecticut Ave. NW, the Cleveland Park Library is the 19th library to be renovated or rebuilt, and the first new library to be built in a historic district. The design/build team of Gilbane and Perkins Eastman DC worked the project in partnership with Saxon Collaborative under the Library’s Mentor-Protégé program.

DCPL says the city has invested half a billion dollars in modernizing its libraries since 2009 and that, thus far, “nearly half of the 20 District-rebuilt or renovated libraries have received honors from AIA|DC.” Check out the architecture group’s 2018 awards for D.C. projects here.

The Cleveland Park Library
Sarah Mechling, courtesy Perkins Eastman DC/D.C. Public Library