Topeka and Shawnee County Public Library stands at 10th Street
and Washburn Ave. in Topeka, Kansas. The newly-dedicated
rennovation to the library was designed by internationally-known
architect, Michael Graves.
The three story addition surrounds three sides of the original 1951
building. The main floor entrance lobby is topped by a 50 ft. diameter,
two story high rotunda. The new
construction phase of the library was completed one year ago.
By January 2002 the older portions of the building had been refurbished
to complete the project. Library staff were delighted to have First
Bush, help with the dedication on Wed., January 9th. An
ex-librarian, she also read a book by a Kansas author to 3rd graders
from Randolph Elementary School.
features of the library include an art gallery, a computer center,
an audio-video collection, an auditorium, a bookstore, a cafe, Circulation
Desk, Red Carpet Services (for those with hearing or vision impairments),
Youth Services, Periodicals Collections, and Adult Collections and
New Books suites. Around walls above the Reference Desk is a stunning
200 ft. mural by Kansas artist Stan
Herd. A reading room faces north. The building is appointed
with Graves-designed furniture and carpeting. A 36 ft. tall atrium
fills the center of the libraary. The upper level houses offices
and the Topeka Room, with it's collection of historic furnishings
and appointments and stacks of books by Topeka authors.
the second level of the library, the Topeka Room has a warm and
cozy atmosphere. It includes furnishing from a number of famous
Topeka residences, as well as a collection of writing by Topeka
authors, including Rex Stout and Rev. Charles Sheldon. While the
books are designated for reference only, patrons are welcome to
relax and study in the Topeka Room.
Saturday, January 5 the new Alice Sabatini Gallery of the library
was dedicated. The opening exhibit was of Alice's watercolors and
graphic design work. In the months to come, the gallery's permanent
collection will be featured in several exhibitions. The library's
art gallery had been closed for 5 years during planning and rennovation.
Topeka art lovers are glad to have their gallery back!
week's acitivities included programs
for kids of all ages and adults. Various library rooms were dedicated.
Music, art, writing and dancing were featured. Below are a few of
the many area artists and lecturers who were involved in the celebration.
Kansas author of
Coldsmith of Emporia, Kansas has written nearly 40 novels.
Don is a member of the Western Writers of America and winner
of the Edgar Wolfe Award for lifetime contribution to Literature.
He has written 39 novels of the American West.
visit the official site of the Topeka and Shawnee County Public Library:
the photo essay of completed
new construction phase -- Jan. 2001
Read about Library
Director David Leamon in the Sun., Jan. 27 Topeka Capital-Journal
All photos © 2002 by Carol Yoho
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