News

                            Fred Piegonski, Executive Assistant to the President  
               Los Angeles City College, 855 N. Vermont Avenue, Los Angeles, CA 90029 
                           (323) 953-4000  ext. 2243      piegonfg@lacitycollege.edu                            

                      For Immediate Release:  July 14, 2006

New Library Slated for Construction at LA City College -- To Open in 2008

Library Entrance - Facing South

Back of Library - Facing North to Willowbrook

Image: Library Front

Image: Library Rear
East Side toward Vermont West Side Facade
Image: Library East Side Image: Library West Side
Library 1st Floor Plan  Library 2nd Floor Plan
Image: Library 1st Floor Image: Library 2nd Floor
Library 3rd Floor Plan Logo: Steinberg Architects
Image: Library 3rd Floor

Three Story Structure Will Provide New Amenities for Library Patrons

Los Angeles City College will soon embark on the construction of a new library on its East Hollywood campus. It will replace the old one on the quad which was built in the mid-30s, with additions from the 60s.

The new library will be located on the north end of the campus, along Willowbrook Avenue near Vermont, on the site of the current men’s gymnasium and former athletic field. It will be conveniently located near the Santa Monica-Vermont Metro stop.

Designed by Steinberg Architects, the building will be three stories high. The building is being funded with approximately $20 million from the State and $1.8 million from Prop A funds. Groundbreaking will occur in the fall of this year and the building should be completed by early 2008.

“The new library will be much more pleasant for the students,” said Barbara Vasquez, library chairperson. “It will be a lot more intuitive as to where things are, with more outdoor light from expansive windows. Because of its shape, all interior spaces will be near windows, even the study rooms. And the second and third floors will have nice views of downtown. There will be improved safety features. And the furniture will be more ergonomic. Also there’ll be more study rooms to accommodate the demands of the students.”

The new structure will have a long and narrow shape, 300 feet long and 60 feet wide, with 64,000 square feet of space, which is equivalent to the old one. With a staff of 14 librarians and library technicians, the library will house 150,000 books, with computerized databases for newspaper and magazine research. The college newspaper, The Collegian, will also be on line. There will be ample internet connections, both for hardwired and wireless computers.

The first floor will house the circulation desk, periodicals, the reference desk with 36 adjacent computers, an archive room, and a computer classroom. The second floor will house 126 computers, one third of the book stacks, eight group study rooms, plus individualized study areas. The remainder of the books will be housed on the third floor, with nine group study rooms, an additional computer classroom, a conference room and individual study areas with carrels and tables.

The new building will have a faux-brick facade that will complement the look of the nearby brick-clad communications building. It will also have many windows. The interior decorations will include blue carpeting, furniture made of light wood with a deep navy inset that will resist marring, and ergonomic chairs. The book stacks will have metallic gray shelving and the lounge chairs will be lime green with navy accents. The building will have state-of-the-art air conditioning and the ceilings are being designed to expose the ductwork and lighting. Two public elevators, a separate elevator for book carts, as well as a number of stairways will also be incorporated into the design.

The new library building will take the name of the old one with it: the Martin Luther King, Jr., Library. An engraving of the text of Dr. King’s “I Have a Dream” speech will be placed on a first floor window next to the entrance.

The lead architect is Gilbert Rocca. Steinberg Architects has offices located in Los Angeles, San Jose and San Francisco. The firm has designed other buildings for the LA Community College District, as well as libraries throughout the world, including one in New Zealand.

To prepare the site for construction, the men’s gym will be taken down later this summer. During the construction phase, the old library will still be in use.

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