Commerce Township Community Library
Commerce Township commissioned Daniels and Zermack Architects to design a new 35,000 square foot one story library to replace their current 20,000 sf library that has been housed in a renovated golf course clubhouse. DZA assisted the Township board with evaluating potential sites. The Board made the determination to locate the new library in the more geographically centered Dodge Park location. This site is just across a creek from major soccer fields within the densely wooded park setting. In other areas of the large, historic, Dodge Park stand tracks of white pine trees planted by the Civilian Conservation Corps. The siting of the library within this park setting required carefully balancing the desire for high visibility of the library while preserving as much of the naturalized wooded setting as possible to allow the new library to complement the passive recreational park activities that would share this beautiful setting.
A fairly tight budget required the design team to creatively squeeze the most design impact out of the project while ensuring the layout achieved a highly functional and adaptable plan. Keeping the building form, materials, and details relatively simple, except in keys areas where small design gestures could deliver the greatest impact, helped the project stay on budget. Key examples include a glassy projecting bay with fireplace and clerestory windows that serves as the terminus of the major east –west circulation spine within the building that projects outward to the west to maximize visibility of the library to the heavily traveled South Commerce Road providing “windows” into library services for passersby. Another dramatic feature is the sweeping limestone colored, curved wall that encloses the teen and youth areas providing interesting interior spaces while allowing the building to recede away from the road and nestle back into the wooded park setting. At the east end of the curving wall, a large glass curtainwall angles toward the entry and parking lot to create a vast picture window into the youth area for those arriving to visit the library. Limestone colored columns at a covered entry loggia provide wayfinding cues to help guide visitors toward the building entry.
The library also includes a drive-up book return for patron convenience which has been designed to accommodate an automatic materials handling system.
Completion Date: January 2017
Project Cost: $7,000,000
Project Size/Scope: 34,590
Project Awards: Design Award, AIA Huron Valley Chapter, 2017