A Unity of Old and New

A Unity of Old and New

Children’s Library Discovery Center

The Queens Central Library expansion building has established an important cross-cultural knowledge center for the children of New York’s largest quarter.

In 2004 the sitting mayor Michael Bloomberg launched the Design Excellence Program ofNew York City. Its goal was to create the highest quality in the fields of “architecture”, “urban planning” and “environmental design”. For this the “Five points approach for sustainability” was developed: Special requirements for man, ecology, energy, materials and money were worded.

Being part of the New York City Design Excellence Program the master plan by 1100 Architect considers itself a refurbishing and modernization plan of the Queens Central Library as well as of the adjacent expansion buildings named Children’s Library Discovery Center (CLDC). CLDC is a blend of a natural science museum and a library for kids. The center was completed in September 2011. The building costs reached the lordly sum of €17,500,000.

Cross-disciplinary Design

In cooperation with librarians and chief executives of Queens Library as well as representatives of the New York City Department of Design and Construction, 1100 Architect have developed three designs for restructuring, expanding and renewing the old building. The first design was dealing with an expansion building. The second design only dealt with restructuring and restoring the old building, and the third plan was a blend of these two concepts. After evaluating the costs and the realization, plan no. 3 was decided for. The first stage of the master plan was realized.

Experiential on two Floors

Through the entrance of the Queens Central Library you also get into the Children’s Library Discovery Center, spreading across two floors. The bottom floor houses an openly designed reading area and a zone for little children. Numerous exhibits have been spread across tables and interactive showcases, ordered by topic. Library shelves and separate secondary rooms limit the spatial structure, a map of Queens drawn on the floor rounds off the idea of experiential knowledge. The map informs big and small visitors about the points of interest the quarter has to offer. Apart from that, it displays all the branches of Queens Central Library.

A centrally placed flight of stairs near the entrance area leads the visitors to the upper floor. The exposed stair with its sculptural character bears the unmistakable character of 1100 Architect. It motivates visitors to go by foot, and thus pushes the lift to the back.

The layout of the upper floor consists of various learning and reading areas and is amended by offices, several secondary rooms and a multi-purpose room. Colorful graphics are supposed to help visitors find their way inside the library. Graphical information signs you can find all over the library, inform children in a playful way about the new building’s sustainability concept. The visitor’s eye runs along the regularly arranged and folded levels of the acoustic ceilings on both floors. Through shifts in the ceiling the ventilation system was able to be integrated in a smart fashion.

Attraction Point of Glass

The large breakthroughs in the glass façade let plenty of natural light inside. Thanks to the cleverly designed outer walls many seats were created, inviting to read.

The building’s façade consists of four various glass types. These are loosely arranged elements, giving the new building’s outside walls sheen and brilliancy thanks to their material being transparent, translucent and opaque in its texture.

Functional and “Green“

The sustainable concepts of the library buildings by 1100 Architect are not unknown anymore. And also with the Children’s Library Discovery Center sustainability can be witnessed. The architects took care of a high performance façade and guaranteed a maximum of daylight exploitation, a 100 per cent fresh air usage and energy-efficient lighting. Apart from that, local and recyclable materials with a low VOC percentage have been used.

Hence, the Children’s Library Discovery Center can expect to receive the LEED certificate in the “Silver” category in the near future. This is a rating awarded by the U.S Green Building Council to sustainably designed buildings.

Project details


1100 Architect


Completion: September 2011


Floor area: 1,870 m²


You need to login or register to post comments.
This comment will automatically be synchronized on social networks.
pepdealc's picture
pepdealc 19. January 2014 - 17:10

Say, you got a nice blog article.Really looking forward to read more. Really Great.

buying soundcloud plays
buying cheap youtube views
buying google plus ones
buying twitter followers

jstatham049's picture
jstatham049 13. November 2014 - 11:37

nice blog article.Really looking forward to read more. Really Great...recommended you read

jstatham049's picture
jstatham049 19. November 2014 - 6:55

Really looking forward to read more. Really Great.Free PDF Links

jstatham049's picture
jstatham049 20. November 2014 - 8:30

article.Really looking forward to read more...Dominic Avery

clodymony's picture
clodymony 8. December 2014 - 18:31

This is a well written and quality article! It is essential to support children and to encourage them to read in order to develop their knowledge. There are some interesting books that children may enjoy reading and this is great. Reading may be seen as an entertaining option. There are also some other entertainment ideas that your kid may like. For instance, many schools host shows in which they invite the best children’s entertainer in Princeton, NJ in order to make children laugh.

billmarket17's picture
billmarket17 21. January 2015 - 9:43

Nowadays it is more difficult to raise your children. Sometimes parents can go wrong applying their rules, but this doesn't mean that they don't love their children. From an early age, they take care of their children, buying Yankees baby clothes, milk bottles and so on. The result should be a young person well-behaved and educated.

billmarket17's picture
billmarket17 25. January 2015 - 9:31

As any other public institution, this library should have installed a few security gadgets against flood, fire and earthquake. Many people who live in areas where dangerous storms occur often have learned their lesson. They took some safety measurements to protect their home against this phenomenon and even resort to storm damage restoration services to repair the damages.

billmarket17's picture
billmarket17 18. February 2015 - 12:45

The library looks amazing, every child and adult will be attracted by this unique design and interior setting. The Moduform library furniture is also interesting and if you plan other renovations, you should order a few pieces. You will see that every piece of furniture is made from quality and solid wood, specially created to resist in time.

billmarket17's picture
billmarket17 25. February 2015 - 9:10

These newly renovated libraries are extremely attractive. Children enjoy the new environment and the parents trust the new cleaning technologies, which are more eco-friendly because they don't use chemical products. For example, the carpet upholstery protection treatment in Cincinnati is choicen not only by public institutions to clean their carpets, but also by homeowners, who want an eco-friendly alternative to the traditional carpet cleaning techniques.