Building Libraries and Library Additions: A Selected Annotated Bibliography

ALA Library Fact Sheet 11

Building new libraries, additions, and even remodeling can be a daunting task, and one that most librarians do not undertake frequently. This fact sheet provides references to the tools, resources, and advice to help you manage your library building project, whether large or small. Although this list has been segmented by types of libraries--academic (college/university) libraries (along with a section on planning archives and off-site shelving), public libraries, and school libraries--materials listed for one type may have useful information for planning other types of buildings. And the end of this page now includes resources for planning specialized areas within libraries, such as areas for children, teens/young adults or seniors, and on building joint-use libraries.

Also see the Buildings page from the ALA Professional Tips Wiki.

The Buildings and Facilities section of the ALA Online Store quickly links to ALA's own print books, e-books, eCourses, and webinars on these subjects.

A list of books on library buildings, compiled by this office, appears at, the free online database of library catalogs from across the country, in which you can search for a book title by zip code to get the closest library that has it, at:
Library Buildings at

Safety and security issues can be found on ALA Library Fact Sheet 10 - Disaster Response: A Selected Annotated Bibliography.

Resources on "green" libraries and the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Green Building Rating System™ appear at Green Libraries.

See our resources on the building of so-called "bookless" libraries.

A continuously updated list of library building resources, including articles with photograph slideshows of distinctive library buildings, can be found at Library Buildings:

Photograph Resources of Library Buildings

General Information

ADA -- Americans with Disabilities Act.

See the online ADA resources compiled by ALA's Association of Specialized and Cooperative Library Agencies (ASCLA, a division of ALA), including the Library Services for People with Disabilities Policy and Library Accessibility--What You Need to Know toolkit series of fifteen tipsheets, edited by Monique DeLatte.

The ADA and Libraries post on the Ask the ALA Library Blog covers minimum aisle width between stacks.

ADA and Bookmobiles is part of Mobile Libraries.

American Institute of Architects (AIA). You and Your Architect. Washington, DC: The AIA.

Brief introduction to the architect-client relationship.

American Libraries. Vol. 45, No. 9/10 (September/October 2014): 31-53.

Previously found in the April issue, American Libraries, ALA's bimonthly member magazine, focuses on library facilities in its September/October issue again this year. The 2014 Library Design Showcase feature section begins with the Architects' Showcase, followed by the photo essays, "Designs That Last" and "ALA/IIDA Library Interior Design Awards", both by Phil Morehart, and concludes with "Why Didn't Anyone Tell Me? A Dozen Things No One Tells You about Library Building Projects" by Tim Schlak; "Collections are for Collisions: Design It Into the Experience" by Steven J. Bell; and "Winning the Space Race: Expanding Collections and Services with Shared Depositories" by Lizanne Payne.

American Library Association. Building Blocks for Planning Functional Library Space, 3rd Edition. Lanham, MD: Scarecrow Press, 2011.

As in the second edition of Building Blocks for Planning Functional Library Space, this volume outlines the measures of space needed for the use of equipment and furniture within a library setting. It provides drawings of typical library furniture and equipment along with diagrams of the space required for their use. In addition, this volume also contains a brief text that provides an overview of the planning process, as well as details on several aspects of design and planning. With this expanded and revised edition, planners of new, renovated, or existing space will be better able to effectively utilize the space they have and to resist the temptation to overload a given space with too many functions. This third edition significantly expands the number of illustrations found in the previous edition, adding information on newer library technology and amenities. Photographs of furniture and equipment in library settings further enhance the user's understanding of applicable square footage needs. Designed to be consulted after the decision to build has been made, this volume answers the critical question, "How much space do we need?".

Bailey, D. Russell and Barbara Gunter Tierney. Transforming Library Service Through Information Commons: Case Studies for the Digital Age. Chicago: American Library Association, 2008.

The Information Commons (IC) strives to unite all the facts and figures of the world into a resource available to everyone. Many academic libraries are considering implementing an information commons model that reflects the contemporary way patrons use resources. Others plan on revitalizing their libraries through configurations that easily integrate research, teaching, and learning with a digital focus. This invaluable guide provides the "how-to" information necessary for institutions considering the development of an information commons. Offering plain-speaking advice on what works, expert authors Bailey and Tierney provide comprehensive case studies from small and large academic libraries to help librarians implement, provide training for, market, and assess an information commons. Each of the 20 case studies details lessons learned through the successes and mistakes of building an IC; summary Data Charts for each library including annual budget and number of patrons; common properties and characteristics of ICs across the nation, including staff needs; and physical descriptions, photos, and sample brand and graphics from other ICs. Readers will learn the historical context for Information Commons and understand what practicalities need to be part of the planning process. Academic, public, and school librarians who are considering an IC or are looking for ways to improve their IC will find a wealth of information here. See the Web Extra page for Transforming Library Service Through Information Commons (additional resources available via at

Barclay, Donald A., and Eric D. Scott. The Library Renovation, Maintenance, and Construction Handbook. New York: Neal-Schuman Publishers, Inc., 2011.

The Library Renovation, Maintenance, and Construction Handbook is a one-stop, easy-to-understand resource that will guide you through the often complicated, jargon-filled arenas of building construction and renovation, so that you can effectively advocate for your ideas about how form supports your library’s functions. Authors Donald A. Barclay and Eric D. Scott draw on their extensive experience to provide a wealth of accessible and practical advice for creating functional, attractive, and long-lasting library spaces. They introduce readers to the major stages of construction and renovation, explain details like building codes, reading plans, and building systems, and even provide a handy glossary of key construction terms. This helpful guide outlines all of the vital steps for building or renovating library-specific spaces, including coverage of interior design, signage, safety and security, and what it means to build a green library. You'll find tips for daily and emergency maintenance, as well how to protect and manage a library during a renovation. The companion CD-ROM makes the glossary searchable, gives you digital blueprint symbols to help you learn about reading plans, features digital images illustrating major construction methods discussed in the book, and includes many useful forms and checklists to customize for your library. Unfortunately, they don't teach building renovation, maintenance, and construction in library school. Whether you're building or renovating a public, academic, school, or special library, this accessibly-written new guidebook will equip you with the fundamental knowledge and tools you need. The freely available Library Renovation, Maintenance, and Construction Handbook excerpt (PDF) is the extensively-detailed table of contents, list of illustrations, and the preface.

Bryan, Cheryl. Managing Facilities for Results: Optimizing Space for Services. Chicago: American Library Association, 2007.

Building from the proven Results Series model, this volume dovetails with the basics outlined in The New Planning for Results: A Streamlined Approach. This new hands-on workbook in the Results Series guides library directors, staff, and boards through the various assessment, planning, and location siting processes, and is supplemented with 23 workforms to support the information and collection process. Three toolkits provide technical assistance on calculating square footage, assessing the message, and complying with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) requirements. With examples ranging from small to large small public libraries, the process is equally valuable for school, special, and academic librarians who are faced with similar space repurposing challenges. Any library can embrace these practical, proven techniques for addressing community needs--by creating a blueprint that prioritizes services and creates the space for them within their existing facility. NOTE: See the Managing Facilities for Results Workforms that are freely available online via E-Learn Libraries.

Designing Better Libraries: Exploring the Application of Design, Innovation, and New Media to Create Better Libraries and User Experiences - The DBL Philosophy - Who We Are

Designing Better Libraries is a blog about design thinking and how it applies to library settings. The goal of this blog is to provide information, news and ideas that librarians can use to design a great library user experience for their communities. Among the topics we'll be covering are instructional design, innovation, technology design, and the application of new media to design – and of course – design thinking.

Library Journal. 138, no. 19 (November 15, 2013): 22-43. Annual Year in Architecture issue.

Every year, Library Journal, a magazine published by Media Source, Inc., reports the results of their survey on new and newly-renovated library buildings, with a summary listing of costs and funding sources. The November 15, 2013 cover story, Year in Architecture 2013: Something for Everyone [8 Photo Galleries], by Bette-Lee Fox, features 77 public library projects and 14 academic library projects, separated out into New Buildings, Additions, and Renovations categories, along with the Six-Year Cost Summary. As usual, an alphabetical list of all of the architecture firms (pages 36, 38) and then the Architect Showcase (pages 40-43), a special photographic advertising section for the architects, is included. This article is always reprinted (without the color photographs) in the Library and Book Trade Almanac™ annual reference publication. Additional resources in library buildings, furnishings, and equipment can be accessed via Library Journal Architecture, Buildings, & Facilities including the annual Spring and Fall Library By Design supplements.

Library Leadership and Management Association (LLAMA, a division of ALA;

LLAMA's Buildings and Equipment Section offers a number of resources, including electronic discussion lists devoted to library buildings issues. See all of ALA's electronic discussion lists at <>, including the discussion lists for LLAMA. Library buildings issues can also be discussed in the LLAMA Buildings & Equipment Section online forums at the ALA Connect social network at <>.

See the ALA/AIA Library Building Awards and Previous Winners of the AIA/ALA Library Buildings Award Program, established to encourage excellence in the architectural design and planning of libraries. Awarded by ALA/LLAMA and AIA every two years. Additional details can be found on the AIA website at AIA/ALA Library Building Awards, including its pages for the 2013 AIA / ALA Library Building Awards and 2011 AIA / ALA Library Building Awards.

See the ALA/IIDA Library Interior Design Award. This biennial competition is co-sponsored by the American Library Association (ALA) and the International Interior Design Association (IIDA). A gallery of the winning entries is also available for viewing at the IIDA web site.

McCarthy, Richard C. Managing Your Library Construction Project: A Step-by-Step Guide. Chicago: American Library Association, 2007.

Expert author Richard C. McCarthy, AIA, is an architect with in-depth expertise building libraries as well as an 18-year veteran library trustee. He communicates the challenges and opportunities from both sides of the table. This authoritative overview is filled with practical advice to understand key relationships and manage a complex process. Library directors, professionals, administrators, and trustees will get expert answers to their questions. Checklists and sample construction documents provide hands-on insights into the best practices in library construction and tools to do the job.

Piotrowicz, Lynn M., and Scott Osgood. Building Science 101: A Primer for Librarians. Chicago: American Library Association, 2010.

Take care of your library and it will take care of you! In this practical, concise volume, authors Lynn M. Piotrowicz and Scott Osgood provide a tour of the library building from foundation to roof. In a time of rapidly inflating energy prices and tight public budgets, many libraries are faced with older physical facilities that are not up to modern standards of efficiency. Designed for libraries where construction of a wholly new building is not feasible, this book offers step-by-step instructions for improving the energy use of existing structures, with methods for being environmentally and fiscally responsible; identifying ways to enhance building maintenance; and investing resources now in order to free them later for core library functions. Managers will welcome this handy orientation guide and feel empowered to recommend changes at their own libraries using the authors' expert advice. The freely available Building Science 101 excerpt (PDF) of the book includes the table of contents, the introduction, chapters one through three -- Chapter 1: Planning and Other Words of Wisdom; Chapter 2: Immediate Cost-Saving Measures; Chapter 3: Beginner Building Science Lessons -- and the index.

Sannwald, William W. Checklist of Library Building Design Considerations, Fifth Edition. Chicago: American Library Association, 2009.

Planning construction of a new library facility or renovation of an existing one can be a daunting task. With the new fifth edition of his Checklist of Library Building Design Considerations, veteran library administrator and construction consultant William Sannwald guides librarians and other members of a building design team through the stages of the design process. Updated materials include a new chapter on sustainable design, including issues of site selection, air quality, and energy and water efficiency; new sections on wireless networking, information commons and media production and presentation labs; updated treatment of special collections and materials handling systems; a new section on disaster planning; and ADA Accessibility Guidelines section reorganized to match structure of the federal statute. The freely available Checklist of Library Building Design Considerations, Fifth Edition excerpt (PDF) includes the table of contents, the author's preface, and all of Chapter 2: Library Site Selection.

Schmidt, Aaron, and Amanda Etches. Useful, Usable, Desirable: Applying User Experience Design to Your Library. Chicago: American Library Association, 2014.

Useful, useable, desirable: like three legs of a stool, if your library is missing the mark on any one of these it’s bound to wobble. Every decision you make affects how people experience your library. In this useful primer, user experience (UX) librarians Schmidt and Etches identify 19 crucial touchpoints such as the library website, email, furniture, parking lot, events, and newsletters. They explain why each is important to your library’s members and offer guidance on how to make improvements. From library administrators to public relations and marketing staff, anyone concerned with how members experience your library will benefit from this book’s coverage of the eight principles of library UX design, explaining how they can guide you to better serve your library's members; advice on simple, structured ways to evaluate and improve aspects such as physical space, service points, policies and customer service, signage and wayfinding, online presence, and using the library; and scorecard system for self evaluation, which includes methods for determining how much time, effort, and skill will be involved in getting optimum performance. Easy to dip into as the need arises, this book points the way towards ensuring that your library is a welcoming space for everyone. The freely available Useful, Usable, Desirable excerpt (PDF) includes the table of contents, all of Chapter 1: Introducing Library User Experience, and the index.

University of British Columbia. School of Library, Archival and Information Studies. Planning and Building Libraries.

This site has been created for librarians, architects, design consultants, and students interested in all aspects of planning and building libraries. The site provides an outline of key resources that are available online. Graduate students at the School of Library, Archival and Information Studies at the University of British Columbia have collaborated on this project. Recommendations for further resources are welcomed. Site last updated August, 2005

WebJunction - Space Planning.

WebJunction, the online learning community of library professionals, provides a guide to selected space planning resources on its web site at WebJunction's Focus on Space Planning for Libraries. Also see Planning the Library Space from Scratch and Practical Tips for Library Building Design.

Whole Building Design Guide: Design Guidance - Libraries.

Prepared under contract to the U.S. General Accounting Office, this is a web-based portal providing government and industry practitioners with one-stop access up-to-date information on a wide range of building-related guidance, criteria and technology from a 'whole buildings' perspective. Currently organized into two major categories - Design Guidance and Project Management - at the heart of the WBDG are Resource Pages, reductive summaries on particular topics. It includes references and guidelines for the building of all types of libraries (as well as a number of other types of buildings).

Woodward, Jeannette. Countdown to a New Library: Managing the Building Project, Second Edition. Chicago: American Library Association, 2010.

Writing from the perspective of a librarian who has been through numerous building projects, Jeannette Woodward walks you through the process of overseeing the planning and construction of a building project. Packed with helpful checklists and worksheets, this revised edition includes updated references, standards, materials, and resources; tips for efficient HVAC systems and evolving rules for LEED certification; and information on new technological issues. Using hands-on tools and real-life insider stories from librarians around the country, this is a must-have crash course in planning and building today's libraries! The freely available Countdown to a New Library excerpt (PDF) includes the table of contents, the preface and introduction, chapters one and two -- Chapter 1: Off to a Good Start; Chapter 2: The World of Architects and Contractors -- and the index. Also see Woodward's April 2, 2010 article, Librarians, Self-Preservation, and Construction Budgets: Be prepared for cost overruns, finger-pointing, and bad publicity.

____. Creating the Customer-Driven Library: Building on the Bookstore Model. Chicago: American Library Association, 2005.

Woodward states in this book's introduction that "this book is not just for public libraries. There is no library, no matter whether school, special, or academic, that can't be more effective by appealing to a wider population." As stated on its page at the ALA Online Store: How can libraries make a difference in their communities when customers choose to hang out in the spacious, well-stocked new bookstore instead? With the goal of helping libraries market their services using low-cost or no-cost techniques, Woodward shares practical lessons for any library's revitalization inspired by the success of mega bookstores. Libraries remain vitally important to the organizations and communities they serve. Using these outreach and marketing strategies, Woodward shows libraries how to "Become better than a bookstore," even without a hefty budget.

For Planning Academic Libraries

Association of College and Research Librarians (ACRL).

The ACRL Standards and Guidelines page contains links to the various standards and guidelines that have been established by the ACRL. Although several of the standards include brief statements about the facilities, none contains formulas for figuring space specifications. The general standard is Standards for Libraries in Higher Education. The three "Special Topics" standards may be useful in specific contexts: Guidelines for Curriculum Materials Centers, Standards for Distance Learning Library Services, and Guidelines for Media Resources in Academic Libraries.
ACRL has teamed with LLAMA to establish the Guide For Architects and Librarians: Resources for Planning Higher Education Library Spaces Wiki, to provide a basic framework for architects, planners, and librarians embarking on planning and design of libraries for higher education. This Guide will provide information for thinking about the design of new and renovated library space, and point toward additional resources that can support, inform and enhance the academic library design process.

Collins, Boyd, et al. Building a Scholarly Communications Center: Modeling the Rutgers Experience. Chicago: American Library Association, 1999.

This text uses the authors' experiences at Rutgers to demonstrate how to establish a facility that employs new technology to bring together a multitude of information formats. This type of facility provides users with access to resources within and beyond the library walls. The authors describe the building process, examine potential problems, and provide solutions to ensure success. They focus on how facility design, funding, and technology considerations will impact quality research and instruction.

Leighton, Philip D. and David C. Weber. Planning Academic and Research Library Buildings. 3rd ed. Chicago: American Library Association, 1999.

Leighton and Weber have updated their classic text on planning and building academic and research libraries. This highly detailed book works through the building process and tries to show the reader how to solve potential problems before they occur. Leighton and Weber discuss design theory, the planning process, working with architects, policy decisions, staff preparation, fund-raising, space requirements, seating accommodations, budgeting, additions and renovations, technological considerations, and much more. This 800-page reference work covers these subjects by using the authors' first hand knowledge, floor plans, and illustrations.

Woodward, Jeannette. Creating the Customer-Driven Academic Library. Chicago: American Library Association, 2009.

With more and more scholarly content available online and accessible almost anywhere, where does the traditional "brick and mortar" library fit in? In this book Jeannette Woodward attacks these and other pressing issues facing today's academic librarians. Her trailblazing strategies center on keeping the customer's point of view in focus at all times to help you integrate technology to meet today's student and faculty needs; revaluate the role and function of library service desks; implement staffing strategies to match customer expectations; and create new and effective promotional materials. Librarians are now faced with marketing to a generation of students who log on rather than walk in and this cutting-edge book supplies the tools needed to keep customers coming through the door. Includes chapter titled, "Transforming Spaces on Tight Budgets." The freely available Creating the Customer-Driven Academic Library excerpt (PDF) includes the table of contents, all of Chapter 1: Reinventing the Academic Library, and the index. Also see the Web Extra page for Creating the Customer-Driven Academic Library.

For Planning Archives, Off-Site Shelving

Nitecki, Danuta A. and Curtis L. Kendrick, eds. Library Off-Site Shelving: Guide for High-Density Facilities. Englewood, CO: Libraries Unlimited, 2001.

Remote storage of little-used research materials is a relatively new solution to building problems. This collection of essays by those who have planned and managed such facilities is a useful guide through cost, design and preservation issues, as well as to the issues that arise once a facility is in operation.

Pacifico, Michele F. and Thomas P. Wilsted, editors. Archival and Special Collections Facilities: Guidelines for Archivists, Librarians, Architects, and Engineers. Chicago: Society of American Archivists (available for purchase from American Library Association), 2009.

Required reading for archivists, librarians, and the building professions planning a new or remodeled archival facility, this SAA/Society of American Archivists-approved standard provides guidance on site evaluation, construction, environmental systems, fire protection, security, lighting, materials and finishes, equipment, and the functional spaces for an archival facility that meets the needs of staff and researchers and ensures the preservation of the collections.

Payne, Lizanne. "Winning the Space Race: Expanding Collections and Services with Shared Depositories". American Libraries Vol. 45, No. 9/10 (September/October 2014): 50-53.

Wilsted, Thomas P. Planning New and Remodeled Archival Facilities. Chicago: Society of American Archivists (available for purchase from American Library Association), 2007.

This resource is designed specifically to assist those planning archival facilities and directed to those who have never taken on this responsibility. It can also be used as a text to educate architects and others working with archival building planners about specific functional and collection needs. The book covers the building process, renovating existing buildings, technical issues such as fire protection, security and the building environment, equipment including shelving and move planning. Include a glossary of terms, recently completed facilities, and a listing of equipment and moving companies.

For Planning Public Libraries

Dahlgren Anders C. Public Library Space Needs: A Planning Outline. Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction, Public Library Development, 2009. Available online only at:

This outline is intended to help librarians and library trustees determine whether to initiate a facilities planning process. By completing it, librarians and trustees can obtain a general estimate of their library's space needs based on their library's underlying service goals. With that estimate, planners can assess the adequacy of their library's existing overall square footage and determine if a more detailed study is called for. The process described in this outline evolved from a simple concept—that library space needs are based on what a library must house in order to serve its community adequately. The things a library must house to meet its community's needs all have identifiable spatial requirements. Determine the library's inventory and its space needs follow. This outline defines six broad types of library space—collection space, reader seating space, staff work space, meeting space, special use space, and nonassignable space (including mechanical space). It suggests how library goals relating to each of these areas can be projected to meet future needs and provides a way to translate resulting service assumptions into space needs.

Koontz, Christine M. Library Facility Siting and Location Handbook. Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1997.

In this handbook, Koontz provides guidance in selecting a public library location that will optimally serve the community. She discusses siting criteria, location research, and location models. This is done through the use of case studies and personal experience. Koontz helps the reader identify who is using the library, and how to improve services to those who are currently not served. She demonstrates that the location of library facilities should be treated as a primary concern when creating an effective and used library.

McCabe, Gerard B. and James R. Kennedy. Planning the Modern Public Library Building. Westport: CT: Greenwood, 2003.

This collection of 22 essays by librarians and architects in the U.S. and Australia covers all aspects of public library building planning, from gaining support for the new library to selecting the furniture and doing the landscaping. There is also an annotated bibliography to provide access to other material.

Murphy, Tish. Library Furnishings: A Planning Guide. Jefferson, NC: McFarland, 2007.

The life expectancy of a typical library is 20 or so years. This useful life can be greatly extended, however, with extensive planning and an informed choice of versatile, adaptable furnishings. Everything you need to know to accomplish this feat can be found within the pages of this volume. Professional, experienced advice and suggestions take the library designer through the entire design process. This book provides a plethora of information from the planning stages through the finished media center--to allow any librarian or architect to make informed, cost-effective decisions. The work begins with the creation of the development team, explains terminology employed by furniture manufacturers and the conventions used for furnishing measurements. Topics covered include the installation of adequate (and stable) shelving; user-friendly seating arrangements; and plans for satisfying ever-increasing technological requirements. Appendices contain a number of checklists covering such areas as the tasks and responsibilities of the development team; evaluations of various work stations and seating options; ADA surveys; and electronic planning. Detailed diagrams and photographs from completed designs are also included. From colors to work spaces and furniture composition, Tish Murphy’s twenty years of experience in the field provides the reader with firsthand knowledge regarding what works and what doesn't in the world of library furnishings.

Sannwald, William W. "Designing Libraries for Customers (PDF)." Library Administration & Management. 21, no. 3 (Summer 2007): 131-138.

Overview of the trends affecting the design of public libraries, with sections on spaces for children and young adults, sustainable libraries, the impact of technology, and marketing.

For Planning School Libraries

American Association of School Librarians (AASL, a division of ALA).

Transforming the Physical Space of the Library of the Learning Standards & Program Guidelines Implementation Toolkit.

Baule, Steven M. Facilities Planning for School Library and Technology Centers. 2nd ed. Worthington, OH: Linworth Books, 2007.

Learn the keys to success for school facilities of the future: flexibility, planning, expendability, and security. This step-by-step guide offers all the technological and practical information needed to make a functional, enduring, and accommodating library for the future. Written by a practicing school superintendent, this book includes checklists, forms, and timelines to guide you in your library planning journey. Use this book to become the leader on your facilities planning team today!

Dickinson, Gail K. "Library Spaces, Library Faces (PDF)". Knowledge Quest Vol. 42, No. 4 (March/April 2014): 4-5.
Excerpt: "AASL has moved beyond quantitative guidelines and standards. Those old rules of thumb governing space and size were based almost solely on opinion rather than on solid research. AASL now offers support that has much more solid value, such as the guidelines, position statements, toolkits, and other aids that demonstrate what school librarians should be doing in the library. Check out eCOLLAB and the wealth of resources that illustrate the modern school library. Explore the latest developments to prove why the school library is important to your school in School Library Research."

Erikson, Rolf and Carolyn Markuson. Designing a School Library Media Center for the Future. 2nd ed. Chicago: American Library Association, 2007.

In this new second edition, the two school library media specialist authors again share their experiences of working on more than 100 school building projects, with 30 new illustrations and an updated glossary of technical terms. Chapters include "Planning Space Allocation: An Integrated Approach," "Planning for Technology: The Essential Ingredients," and "Making the Library Accessible: An Inclusive Approach." Includes several sample floor plans and a legend of common architectural symbols, and such appendices as "Suggested Space Allocations and Adjacencies," "General Information on Shelving," and "Recommended Chair and Table Heights."

Sullivan, Margaret. Library Spaces for 21st-Century Learners: A Planning Guide for Creating New School Library Concepts. Chicago, IL: American Association of School Librarians, 2013.

Focuses on planning contemporary school library spaces with user-based design strategies. The book walks school librarians and administrators through the process of gathering information from students and other stakeholders involved in planning a resource rich learning space. Information includes how to create needs assessment documents that compliment AASL’s Empowering Learners: Guidelines for School Library Programs. Suggestions for adding meaningful aesthetic components and colorful renderings of sample environments are also provided. This title is also available for purchase as an e-book or as a print/e-book bundle.

For Planning Joint-Use Libraries

See ALA Library Fact Sheet 20 - Joint-Use Libraries: A Bibliography for additional resources.

"Combining Facilities: Joint School-Public Libraries" in Erikson, Rolf and Carolyn Markuson. Designing a School Library Media Center for the Future. 2nd ed. Chicago: American Library Association, 2007.

"Design of Joint Libraries" in Gunnels, Claire B, Susan E. Green, and Patricia M. Butler. Joint Libraries: Models That Work. Chicago: American Library Association, 2012.

"Joint-Use Libraries: The Ultimate Form of Cooperation" in McCabe, Gerard B. and James R. Kennedy. Planning the Modern Public Library Building. Westport: CT: Greenwood, 2003.

For Planning Specialized Areas in Libraries

Children, Teens/Young Adults

Association of Specialized and Cooperative Library Agencies Ad Hoc Subcommittee on Library Standards for Juvenile Correctional Institutions. Library Standards for Juvenile Correctional Facilities. Chicago: Association of Specialized and Cooperative Library Agencies (ASCLA), American Library Association, 1999.

Major socioeconomic changes and technological advances have affected American youth and library service. These standards explain how the library in a juvenile correctional facility must support, broaden, and strengthen the facility’s total program of treatment and education. These standards are appropriate for these types of facilities: long-term facilities that generally hold juveniles who have been adjudicated and committed to custody (some of whom may be serving brief terms of commitment). Usually these institutions offer strong academic and vocational programs designed for extended periods of time; and short-term facilities that generally hold juveniles awaiting (sometimes for several months) adjudication or other disposition. NOTE: Additional prison library resources at compiled by ALA Library.

Bolan, Kimberly. Teen Spaces: The Step-by-Step Library Makeover. 2nd ed. Chicago: American Library Association, 2008.

When writing the first edition of Teen Spaces in 2002, YA (young adult) expert Bolan was challenged to find excellent examples. Now, teen spaces abound and interest continues to grow. With a strategic use of web-based technologies—from the author's website to a Flickr account—this new edition showcases success stories as it reaches out to attract a global community of teen librarians committed to meeting the needs of young adults. Revising the first practical guide to creating inviting spaces for teens in the library, Bolan reveals what it takes for your makeover to go as smoothly as possible. You'll find step-by-step instructions and easy-to-use templates; the latest information on teen spaces policies; new ways to involve teens in the space-renovation process; updated tools, worksheets, instructions, and vendor information; inspiring illustrations and discussions of what other libraries have achieved; and best practices for developing teen spaces. Library directors, teen librarians, and school library media specialists will welcome the inspiration from hundreds of teen spaces around the world, along with hands-on suggestions for revamping their own library. See the extensive Web Extras available for Teen Spaces. Read Chapter 1, Understanding Teens and Their Space (PDF) via WebJunction.

Brown, Emily. "Teen Space on a Dime." YALSA Blog: The Official Blog of the Young Adult Library Services Association. Wednesday, April 14th, 2010. (accessed May 4, 2010).

"Children's Areas: (Quietly?) Entertain while Encouraging Learning" in Murphy, Tish. Library Furnishings: A Planning Guide. Jefferson, NC: McFarland, 2007.

Cranz, Galen and Eunah Cha. "Body-conscious Design in a Teen Space: Post-occupancy Evaluation of an Innovative Public Library (PDF -- p. 46 of 84)." Public Libraries. 45, no. 6 (Nov/Dec 2006): 48-56.

"Designing Library Space for Children and Adolescents" in McCabe, Gerard B. and James R. Kennedy. Planning the Modern Public Library Building. Westport: CT: Greenwood, 2003.

Farrelly, Michael G. Make Room for Teens!: A Guide to Developing Teen Spaces in the Library. Santa Barbara, CA: Libraries Unlimited, 2010.

Creating a new teen space? Looking to do an extreme makeover on your current YA room? Don't get started without this invaluable guide that can help you do it right! With an informal, upbeat approach that emphasizes best practices, the book will help you clear all the hurdles and avoid the pitfalls, beginning with concerns and challenges (such as pressure from within the library) and ending with the creation of a dynamic and flexible space that can be continually renewed. From ideas about location and financing, suggestions for furniture and decor, and tips on collections and computers, to advice on meeting the unique needs of this diverse population and assessment-this guide has it all. The current demographic swell of the teen population has caused librarians to reconsider, revamp, and revitalize young adult services. In many cases, this involves creating or enhancing a Young Adult Room or Teen Space. This guide is intended to help young adult librarians, as well as supervisors and administrators, through the process of creating or improving library space for teens. Drawing on best practices and his own experience, the author points out key issues, concerns, challenges, and pitfalls of the endeavor; and he also provides librarians with tools to create and implement a vision. He begins by addressing concerns and challenges (such as pressure from within the library) to teens and teen spaces; moves on to describe how to create a dynamic and flexible space that can be continually assessed and renewed. Topics include ideas for location and financing, furniture and decor, collections and computers, and meeting the unique needs of this diverse population. Filled with anecdotes and examples of best practices, this book offers an engaging, upbeat approach to a topic of vital interest to today's YA librarians.

Feinberg, Sandra, and James R. Keller. Designing Space for Children and Teens in Libraries and Public Places. Chicago: ALA, 2010.

Providing tips, suggestions, and guidelines on the critical issues that surround designing spaces for children and teens, this how-to book will help you create a space that they will never want to leave. This must-have guide includes how to select an architect or design professional; the importance of including YA librarians in the design and implementation; information on how children and teens view and use space; and color photos of example spaces. Whether your space is large or small, in a library or public place, this resource will give you creative and practical ideas for using the space to its full potential! See the pair's American Libraries article, posted on on March 14, 2010, Designing Space for Children and Teens in Libraries and Public Places: How to Carve out a Niche That Epitomizes Service, by Sandra Feinberg and James R. Keller.

Lushington, Nolan. Libraries Designed for Kids. New York: Neal-Schuman, 2008.

Nolan Lushington - expert library design consultant - covers the complete planning process from concept to "grand opening." He takes you from the technical aspects of design and construction, to the finer points of lighting, acoustics, furnishings, equipment, and multimedia areas, storywells, YA spaces, and more. Whether you're a children's or YA librarian, library director, school facilities planner or architect, you'll discover valuable, practical tips and insights to help you create that inviting environment called the library. The freely availabale Libraries Designed for Kids excerpt (PDF) includes the table of contents, preface, and the introduction.

National Teen Space Guidelines. Approved by the YALSA (Young Adult Library Services Association, a division of ALA) Board of Directors, May 2012.

"Teen Spaces: Created from Their Input" in Murphy, Tish. Library Furnishings: A Planning Guide. Jefferson, NC: McFarland, 2007.

"Using Teen Patrons as a Resource in Planning Young Adult Library Space in Public Libraries" in McCabe, Gerard B. and James R. Kennedy. Planning the Modern Public Library Building. Westport: CT: Greenwood, 2003.

Seniors/Older Adults

"Creating a Senior-Friendly Library" in McCabe, Gerard B. and James R. Kennedy. Planning the Modern Public Library Building. Westport: CT: Greenwood, 2003.

Kleiman, Allan M. "Senior Spaces: The Library Place for Baby Boomers, Older Adults & Their Families (PDF)." Presented at the World Library and Information Congress: 74th IFLA General Conference and Council (10-14 August 2008, Québec, Canada).

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Last updated: September 2014

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