The Concord Free Public Library Expansion is Johnson Roberts Associates’ third project for the Concord Public Libraries. In 2005 and 2011, we renovated and expanded the Concord Free Public Library (c. 1873) and the Fowler Branch Library (c. 1930), respectively. Johnson Roberts Associates designed an expansion of the main library that utilizes an adjacent historic house (c. 1797). Construction was completed in 2021.
The expansion included the restoration of the historic house’s exterior and the addition of a link to the current library. The new library space houses a children’s library, a Wi-Fi café, and a makerspace. Adjacent to the expansion is a new outdoor garden. Additionally, renovations to the existing library space created a multipurpose meeting room, a teen room, and study spaces. This project achieved an 80% reduction in energy usage.
“As a member and current President of the Concord Free Public Library Board of Trustees, it has long been among my responsibilities to coordinate building renovation and construction programs for the two branches of our library.
We selected Johnson Roberts Associates over other firms because of their impressive experience with library projects, quality of personnel, creative solutions and perhaps most important, the rapport that we immediately established with them.
The renovations facing the Concord Library were complex. The building is old, oft renovated but never in a comprehensive fashion that addressed its multiple needs. It is located in the heart of one of America’s most historic and frequently visited towns. As such, there is extraordinary visibility, and our expectations are very high. This undertaking required not only thoughtful solutions but also necessitated extremely careful planning to eliminate as much disruption as possible to staff and patrons.”
– Melissa C. Saalfield, President
Concord Free Public Library Board of Trustees