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        Revealing Central’s Beauty

        Fecha:Dec 11,2012

        Meanwhile, children's spaces and space for the genealogy collection both doubled in size. Central library originally opened on January 6, 1912 after four years of construction. The restored and renewed library is scheduled to reopen on December 9, 2012 after two and a half years of demolition and construction.
        A lot of deterioration can happen over the course of a century. Water leaks damaged surfaces; dirt accumulated on walls and ceilings; "modernizations" in the 1950s and '60s gave little heed to the integrity of decorative plaster or paintings; skylights got covered;and book stacks no longer met fire and safety codes.
        Renovation With Integrity
        From outside, Central library looks like one massive building taking up a whole city block. Structurally, it is something different.

        Central library really consists of five buildings, or "pavilions," connected by doors and bridges and a common roof: a rectangular building along each boundary street and a round building in the center surrounded by an annular courtyard. The round building, which houses the Great Hall, is connected by bridges to each of the rectangular buildings.
        McGuire began working on the renovation plan 15 years ago.

        "I think Central is one of the world's best buildings and it deserved a lot of care and thought," he said. "We had to make sure the building was restored and had a workable library inside it. It was a very complex and careful project," he said.
        BSI got involved in the project in 1999 to examine the way the building was constructed and work on estimates.

        "We had to know what hazardous materials were there. We had virtually all the construction drawings, but we didn't have any as-built drawings. We had to investigate how it was built," said Waller. "We worked really hard not to have surprises," he added.
        Initially, the library board worked with a prominent east coast architect on a master plan. "In a series of focus groups with patrons, people said Central was beautiful, but opaque, formal, and austere. It was our intention to open it up to public view," McGuire said.

        The east coast architect suggested a large glass structure on the Locust (north) side to provide the opening.

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