April 23, 2018

Library to dedicate new Hilliard Branch June 21 with community celebration

Current Hilliard Branch to close at 9 p.m. Wednesday, June 6

COLUMBUS—On Thursday, June 21, Columbus Metropolitan Library (CML) will open its new Hilliard Branch to the public with a brief dedication ceremony followed by a grand opening celebration. The event is free and open to all.

  • New Hilliard Branch Dedication and Grand Opening Celebration
  • 4500 Hickory Chase Way
  • Columbus Metropolitan Library
  • Thursday, June 21, 2018 | 3:30-6 p.m.

Following brief remarks and a ribbon-cutting by library and city officials, the afternoon will be filled with refreshments, music and entertainment. Plus, all are welcome to explore the new branch (see rendering above), whether on their own or as part of staff-guided tours. Visitors can also sign up for a commemorative library card and register for a chance to win an eReader.

The current Hilliard Branch located at 4772 Cemetery Rd. will close at 9 p.m. on Wednesday, June 6 to prepare for the move to the new branch. While the branch will be closed to the public, the drive-up book return will remain open.

The new Hilliard Branch will be located in what was originally intended to be the 2-story community center of the Hickory Chase development. The 86-acre Hickory Chase site, initially slated to be a residential community for seniors, fell into foreclosure in 2009 and remained unfinished along Davidson Road between Leap Road and Britton Parkway. At approximately 63,000 square feet, the new branch will be CML’s largest – roughly triple the size of the current Hilliard Branch.

After an extensive renovation of the building’s interior, the new Hilliard Branch will feature:

  • Interactive children’s area with more space for programs and areas for children to read, study and use computers
  • Ready for Kindergarten area where preschoolers and their families can prepare for kindergarten
  • Stroller parking conveniently located on the 1st floor near the children’s area
  • Tween and teen areas with computers, study space and comfortable seating
  • Larger Homework Help Center where students can get free after-school help
  • Three large meeting rooms and 11 individual/small group study rooms for the community to gather and meet
  • Kerr’s Café operated by the Public Perk, which sells coffee, donuts, snacks and lunch items
  • Multiple seating areas including a quiet room and a three-season pavilion
  • A robust collection to meet the community’s needs

Turner is the construction manager at risk and DesignGroup is the architect.

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
  • Construction is underway on a new Martin Luther King Branch, scheduled to open in 2018
  • Construction is underway on a new Dublin Branch, scheduled to open in 2019

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 columbuslibrary.org 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 Centers, 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 and career 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. CML was also named 2010 Library of the Year by Library Journal.