COLUMBUS—Columbus Metropolitan Library (CML) is unveiling its Main Library to the public after a 16-month renovation. CML is welcoming the community to its transformed library with a series of events that are free and open to all. Free parking is available in Main Library’s garage. Members of the media will have access to a riser on the Carnegie Plaza during the ribbon-cutting ceremony.
Saturday, June 25
Noon: Dedication and Ribbon Cutting | Library leaders and city and community officials will provide brief remarks outside on the redesigned Carnegie Plaza before cutting the ribbon and welcoming the community into its new Main Library.
12:30-3 p.m.: Grand Opening Celebration | Main Library will be officially open to the public. Customers can enjoy entertainment and special activities throughout all three floors of the building, explore its new features and sign up for a commemorative library card.
2-3 p.m.: Concert in the Park | A special PBJ & Jazz in the Topiary Park concert featuring Caribbean Jazz Sextet will be presented to commemorate Main Library's reopening. A longstanding summer concert series presented by Friends of the Topiary Park, PBJ & Jazz is an interactive concert designed by Jazz Arts Group to introduce jazz to young children and their families. Bring a blanket or a chair to the park. The concert is sponsored by the Discovery Special Improvement District, the Jennifer M. Keefer Memorial Fund at the Columbus Foundation and Friends of Columbus Metropolitan Library.
Dusk: Outdoor Movie | Gateway Film Center, Friends of the Topiary Park, the Discovery Special Improvement District and the Discovery District Civic Association partner with CML to host The Topiary Park Summer Movies: From Book to Film. The series kicks off at dusk with The Lorax, a 2012 film adaptation of the beloved Dr. Seuss book. Three additional films will be shown throughout the summer.
Saturday, June 25 through Saturday, Aug. 27
art unbound | The Friends of the Library will mark Main Library’s reopening with the return of a favorite: art unbound, in the Carnegie Gallery on the building’s second floor. Local artists were once again challenged to transform library books in disrepair that would otherwise have been recycled into remarkable works of art.
Sunday, June 26
2-4 p.m.: Author Talk with bestselling novelist David Baldacci (SOLD OUT) | Main Library’s opening weekend will culminate with an author talk by thriller writer David Baldacci in Main Library’s new two-story reading room overlooking Topiary Park. This free event, sponsored by the CML Foundation, is sold out.
Main Library closed to the public on April 13, 2015; however, renovations on the building – its first since 1991 – began two months earlier. The work represents a major piece of CML’s aspirational building program to renovate or rebuild 10 library locations within the next few years.
CML’s primary goals with the Main Library renovation are to:
- Build a library that meets the needs of CML’s customers
- Connect the library to Topiary Park to provide outdoor reading space
- Update the Carnegie Plaza along Grant Avenue
- Add a reading room with sweeping views of Topiary Park
- Enhance the children’s area
Main Library was originally completed in 1907 with money donated by Andrew Carnegie. Its expansion beyond the Carnegie building was completed in 1991.
Architects GUND Partnership and Schooley Caldwell Associates (approved at the Jan. 22, 2014 Board of Trustees meeting) have designed the renovation, and Turner (approved Sept. 30, 2013) is serving as construction manager at risk.
Phase one of the 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 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.