The Madison Branch originally opened in 1929 and was designed by Walker & Weeks, the firm behind a number of major area historic landmarks. This is the only branch of the Lakewood Public Library and is centrally located in the historic Birdtown district within walking distance of most area residents. This small landlocked building is tucked into the north west corner of Madison Park with no room to expand. This project focuses on bringing the shine back to this beloved gem through a complete renovation inclusive of restoration of historic features, replacement of mechanical systems and lighting, improving ADA access, and updating interior finishes and furniture. 

Sitework will include extending a new driveway from the dead-end parking lot to allow traffic encircle the building and include a convenient drive-up book return. A small rear addition will include a new ADA accessible entry and fully ADA accessible restrooms on the main library level. 

Renovation work will include restoration of the original windows and exterior ornamental lighting fixtures, repair of decorative cornices, interior asbestos abatement, mechanical, plumbing, and electrical systems replacement and a new standing seam roof. The renovation will uncover and restore blocked clerestory windows that flank the east and west high central spine of the building while a large Palladian style window anchors the south wall to once again bring natural light into this internal space. Additionally the front vestibule will be replaced back to the original vestibule design but with new more efficient doors.  The traditional perimeter wood shelving will be rebuilt after the removal of old hot water pipes that currently constrict the shelf depths to allow them to house the majority of library collection once again. Strategically locating the combined service desk in the central spine and opening once blocked off walls will allow staff full oversight of the main level and both entries. Both reading rooms that adjoin the central spine will be updated with the building’s history in mind yet provide flexibility, convenience power, and updated technology for all the different patron needs. 

An increasing refugee population in this community has put more demand for ESL, educational, and children’s programs.  This branch also has a tradition of being the homework center for children after school. To better accommodate these and other patron’s needs, the underutilized basement level will be completely renovated to access under-utilized storage spaces into public space. Creating a separate children’s program room that can also serve as a homework center is a new feature for patrons. The large meeting space will be updated with technology, power, and a kitchenette with plenty of storage for the different community groups to utilize. The meeting and program room walls will have large windows to the corridor for patrons to see programs being held inside and promote participation. The addition of a group study room with white boards and technology for collaboration will add to the new library service model to provide something for everyone. 

Through thoughtful design and careful detailing this project will revitalize an aged cramped library and allow it to be flexible with updated library services for patron’s needs today and into the future.  


HBM │ Design Architect, Architect of Record, Interior Designer

1382 West Ninth Street, Suite 300
Cleveland, Ohio 44113


© 2020 HBM Architects, LLC

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