Judging Buildings – New Shaw Library (Opens Aug. 2)

It’s been fun watching this building go up. Here’s an update from a DCPL press release:

The Watha T. Daniel/Shaw Interim Library, located at 945 Rhode Island Ave., N.W. will close Tuesday, July 13 at 5:30 pm to move to the new library which is scheduled to open on Monday, Aug. 2. The new Watha T. Daniel/Shaw Neighborhood Library will be located at 1630 7th St. N.W., across from the Shaw Metro station.

During the transition, books from the interim and new books will be moved into the new library, catalogued and shelved; new computers, including Macs for teens will be installed and tested, copiers and other equipment will be moved to the new location and furniture and carpeting.

The new three-story library is approximately 22,000 square feet and will feature separate reading areas for adults, teens and children; a children’s program room; space for 80,000 books, DVDs, CDs and other library materials; 32 public access computers with free Wi-Fi Internet access; comfortable seating for 200 customers; large program room for up to 100 people; two 12-person conference rooms; and a vending area.

22 Comment

  • I think it’s starting to look really good. It fits that strange intersection well.

  • can someone please, please tell me how this building does not have solar panels on the roof considering all the sun it’s going to get???? such a waste of energy, nice design but not energy efficient

    • How much do you actually know about solar panels and energy? As popular as they are, and admittedly a good PR move, solar panels are not really cost effective energy-wise.

      • not even long term?

        • Not even long term. The reality is different than the hype. I agree with the motive and people who can afford to put them on their houses should, but when it something where funding is limited by the city government, I wouldn’t expect that kind of money to be spent on something that won’t reap them benefits in the next decade or two.

      • I disagree. There is a big upfront investment and the payoff comes over time.

        The library will be there for a number of years – it would be cost effective and a smart move to install solar panels.

        even my captcha is affected by the heat – Man flop

        • The library could charge patrons a small fee to check out material to underwrite the solar energy boondoggle. Never mind that would technically be a bookstore. Also, technically, the large bank of south-facing windows creates a rather effective passive solar system.

      • you are kidding right? Do you have any IDEA how much energy goes into the manufacturing of solar panels? And the cost of installation AND maintenance? NOT to mention the huge battery room to store all the energy for this building?

        Have you noticed that the roof is a green roof? That roof will save more energy than those panels could ever generate.

  • I think it looks really great and it’s a good spot to put a modern looking building (I hate when they stick one of those in a long cozy block of row houses!)

  • Fantastic! This makes me pine a little for the renovation of the Petworth Library to be completed – anyone know when that will happen?

  • It looks great but I’m not sure of the wisdom of making it all glass… bullets still fly around there from time to time. Sorry, just feeling cynical today.

    Captcha: papyrus paul

  • Another word about the lack of wisdom of making it all glass – books do NOT do well sitting in the sun all day…not to mention the huge cooling and heating costs there will be with all that uninsulated glass! Did the DC Public Library not learn ANYthing after seeing these exact problems with the MLK library?!?!? Who’s bright idea was it to repeat the problems?

    • That’s a good point…

    • dont these types of windows have a uv blocking film?

    • I did notice during yesterday’s afternoon commute that a layer of some filter-ish gauzy thing was added to the south-facing facade, so that might help some of the sun damage. But it still strikes me as all style & no sense of permanence. It reeks of just another architectural design firm looking for a trophy at the next trade show, versus any kind of soul commitment to the neighborhood.

      That said, it will be nice to have a proper library back there.

  • “macs for teens” what *is* that???

  • ALL the glass is shaded in various ways, and is UV protected, haters.

    This place is awesome. Three thumbs up.

  • And from what I understand this building is seeking LEED Silver Certification for environmentally friendly design and will have a green roof. Maybe that will help with the energy conservation.

  • I’ve been talking with the construction guys on my walk to the metro in the mornings, and they really incorporated a lot of great stuff into the construction.

    I love the building; and I’m really not a fan of glass/steel construction. Great job all around. Really looking forward to it opening.

  • Anon 6:16:

    Most PV solar panels pay back their energy cost (the amount of energy it takes to manufacture it) in only 4 – 5 years, giving you pollution-less energy for the rest of its lifetime. It takes longer than that to pay back the COST of manufacturing it (from the savings over conventional electricity), but even so the cost can usually be made back within 20 – 30 years, depending on the level of subsidies from the State. So, if you can afford the up-front investment, then it’s always worth it to install PV panels.

  • I went past there just yesterday and while it’s an interesting design and nice to have a library after so many years without one, it sticks out like a sore thumb on that corner.

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