In February of 2020, our firm was commissioned to provide a feasibility study considering the space needs for the existing Edson Public Library, built in 1979. With a population of about 8500 people, Edson is located near the mountains and Jasper National Park and is renowned for its diversity of outdoor recreation and culture activities. Anticipating the town’s future growth and projected population for the year 2046, we investigated the library’s essential systems and made suggestions for enhancement which would improve the occupant experience and assure the library’s position as an essential community gathering space for years to come.
The vision for the reimagined Edson Public Library is one of accessibility, connection and imagination. The library responds to the changing needs of its community, and provides an essential point of access for information, knowledge, resources, and technology. A library is much more than a repository for books—for many community members, a library is a primary point of contact for engaging community services and connecting with fellow residents. The existing Edson Public Library falls woefully short of current space requirements. By increasing the available space through thoughtful renovations, this well-coordinated and comfortable space will offer visitors and staff the opportunity to truly enjoy their surroundings, to explore and engage.
A SPACE FOR INSPIRATION
The reimagined Library provides dedicated children’s library spaces, increased accessibility washrooms, silent study areas and a private and quiet staff room—all of which have been deemed essential to the library’s success by both visitors and staff. Other necessary alterations are electrical and mechanical systems updates, including the fire and sprinkler system, and a replacement of the aging—and often leaking—clerestory windows. Aesthetically, the look-and-feel of the building will complement the existing brick exterior and interior elements, resulting in a space that is elegant, pleasant and functional.