August 15, 2017

Library begins construction of new Hilliard Branch

COLUMBUS—Columbus Metropolitan Library (CML) has kicked off construction of its new Hilliard Branch in the 2-story clubhouse of the former Hickory Chase development (see rendering above and map below). At approximately 60,000 square feet, the new branch will be CML’s largest when it opens in 2018 – roughly triple the size of the current Hilliard Branch at 4772 Cemetery Rd.

After an extensive renovation of the interior of the clubhouse, the new Hilliard Branch will feature:

  • Two floors of library space
  • A larger children’s area
  • A larger Homework Help Center
  • A special Ready for Kindergarten area
  • A café serving coffee, pastries and more
  • More meeting rooms and community gathering space
  • More parking

CML hopes to open the new branch by summer of 2018. Turner is the construction manager at risk and DesignGroup is the architect.

The 86-acre Hickory Chase site, initially slated to be a residential community for seniors, fell into foreclosure in 2009 and has remained unfinished along Davidson Road between Leap Road and Britton Parkway.

The new Hilliard Branch is part of CML’s aspirational building program:

  • The new Driving Park Branch opened July 12, 2014
  • The new Whitehall Branch opened April 11, 2015
  • The new Parsons Branch opened June 4, 2016
  • The transformed Main Library opened on June 25, 2016
  • The new Northern Lights Branch opened on Sept. 24, 2016
  • The new Shepard Branch opened on Oct. 13, 2016
  • The new Northside Branch opened on June 22, 2017
  • Planning is underway for a new Martin Luther King Branch
  • Planning is underway for a new Dublin Branch

CML hopes to have all 10 projects completed by 2020.

CML understands that great libraries create stronger communities, and each branch is an essential hub that reflects the unique needs of the neighborhood it serves. Some of CML’s 23 locations are 40 to 50 years old and inadequate to meet the demands of a growing 21st century community. Demands and expectations will continue to grow, along with the population of Franklin County.

CML’s aspirational building program is the result of a community-wide process that will continue to serve the needs of Franklin County well into the future. The plan is a multi-phased comprehensive blueprint that reinvents and revitalizes the entire 600,000 square feet maintained by the library.

In addition to being a vital community asset, Columbus Metropolitan Library strives to minimize its environmental footprint. With each new building or renovation project, CML plans to use sustainable building materials, incorporate glass for natural light to reduce energy costs and introduce other design and building elements friendly to the natural environment.

Phase one of CML’s aspirational building program is transforming and significantly upgrading seven urban branches (Driving Park, Whitehall, Parsons, Martin Luther King, Northside, Northern Lights, Shepard) and two suburban branches (Hilliard and Dublin). In addition, changes to Main Library represent a major investment in downtown Columbus and the Discovery District.

Visit for more information and to track progress of CML’s ambitious building program.

Columbus Metropolitan Library has served the people of Franklin County, Ohio since 1873. With its Main Library and 22 branches, CML is well known for signature services and programs like Homework Help, Reading Buddies, Summer Reading Club and Ready for Kindergarten. The library’s Strategic Plan supports the vision of “a thriving community where wisdom prevails,” which positions CML to respond to areas of urgent need: kids unprepared for kindergarten, third grade reading proficiency, high school graduation, college readiness and employment resources.

CML was named a 2011 National Medal Winner by the Institute for Museum and Library Services for work in community service, the highest honor for libraries and museums. Columbus Metropolitan Library has been rated a 5-Star Library by Library Journal for seven of the eight years the magazine has published its industry ratings.