Here's Why A Brampton Library Just Won A Prestigious Province-Wide Award

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The Ontario Library Association just awarded a Brampton library with a very prestigious award.

The 2019 Ontario Library Association New Library Building Award goes to an Ontario library with stunning architecture, environmental stewardship, connections with local history, and their ability to serve a growing community.

The award presentation will be held at the Ottawa Marriott Hotel on July 10.

"Newly-built libraries today reflect the strong desire for public places that instil a sense of community pride and are, at the same time, highly flexible and functional spaces," comments Shelagh Paterson, executive director of the Ontario Library Association.

The Ontario Library Association awarded four recipients of the distinguished award including Brampton Library's Springdale branch.

The library boasts modern architecture, 20,000 square feet of convertible library space (likely to be used for events), a 5,000 square foot multi-purpose room for library and community programming and events, a common area for those long working and snacking sessions, and a special nook for children with fun colours, shorter bookshelves, and an Everbright light wall with hundreds of colour spectrum dials -- fun to play with for kids and adults.

The library has already won an award as it is a LEED gold-designated building with a green roof, grey water system, geothermal heating and cooling and LED lighting.

"The view from the street is intriguing! It raises your curiosity and invites you to explore. Perhaps the most impressive feature of the LEED Gold certified Springdale library is the building's connection to the local environment and community," said the jury of the 2019 Ontario Library Association New Library Building Award.

Springdale Library is also home to the third location for Makerspace Brampton, a partnership between the City and Sheridan College that offers 3D printing services for residents.

"The building is situated as close to the street as possible to help reach out to the neighbourhood and offers a stunning new architectural feature to draw residents into this vibrant new facility. A blend of outstanding design and technical expertise," said the jury.

Rounthwaite Dick & Hadley (RDH) Architects Inc. designed the space to be both functional and aesthetically striking. The windows are covered in a solar-responsive ceramic frit that resembles the pages of a book and helps to reduce glare and heat gain. RDH also designed the four-acre greenfield site outside of the library, which won the firm a 2015 Canadian Architecture award for design excellence. 

"Our Springdale branch is a game-changer that reinvents perceptions of public library space," said Brampton Library CEO Rebecca Raven. "The vision to inspire connections in this well-established neighbourhood culminated in the spectacular building design. We wanted the public to see themselves here and the response has been tremendous. Over 1000 people use our Springdale Branch every day."

The City of Brampton recently opened Komagata Maru Park beside Springdale Branch Library. The park is a tribute to those who were on the SS Komagata Maru ship, and honours all immigrants and their struggles, triumphs and contributions to the mosaic of Canada. The park is designed around the concept of a "library in the park", where the shapes of playground equipment, such as slides and climbers, spell the word IMAGINE.

"Brampton is a Green City," said Mayor Patrick Brown. "We make it a priority to design and construct buildings that set a high standard for beauty, functionality and environmental responsibility. Springdale Branch Library embodies these priorities and, alongside Komagata Maru Park, it has become an important community hub. We are proud to be recognized by the OLA for this outstanding facility."

The Ontario Library Association also awarded Hamilton Public Library's Binbrook branch, Toronto Public Library's Albion branch and Vaughan Public Library's Civic Centre Resource Library.

The Ontario Library Association Library Building Award encourages and showcases excellence in the architectural design and planning of libraries in Ontario. The award is divided into two alternating categories Library Architectural and Design Transformation, and New Library Buildings.

Photo courtesy of RDH Architects Design Firm

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