Through its collections, programs, and services the Glenview Public Library provides access to the world of information and ideas for its vibrant, diverse community.
Original Library, 1931
The Glenview Public Library was founded by a group of visionaries in the midst of the Great Depression. From the original home in the historic Village Hall on Prairie Street to the move to a permanent facility in 1955, the Library has spread its roots in the same corner of downtown Glenview, evolving with the aspirations of each new generation.
After additions in 1968 and 1986, the determination was made to replace the 50,908 square foot Library with a new 85,000 square foot state-of-the-art facility, reflecting the demands of a culturally diverse population in a rapidly changing technological society. The new Library’s location, size, design, and function were debated for over a decade.
In the end, a plan for the new Library emerged, one that looks toward the future while respecting deeply cherished historic foundations.
Inherent in the Village’s Downtown Development Plan, the Glenview Public Library was to serve as an anchor for the downtown business district, while providing a cultural center in the heart of the Village. Emerging from the formal Building Program, developed by the project architect PSA-Dewberry, Inc. and with input from the Glenview Library Joint Administrative Committee, the vision of the new Library incorporated several driving principles:
A flexible and versatile design approach with respect for
fundamental elements of library service, while planning for future technologies
A location accessible by multiple modes of transportation,amidst downtown businesses, residences, and parks
Expanded community meeting and program spaces
Quiet areas of study
An architectural style, rooted in historic motifs and weaving consumption were addressed, as well as sustainability in infrastructure design and choice of building materials. The creation of a professional work environment for librarians,
volunteers, and support staff that reflects a commitment to the profession and to the community, while fostering patron and peer-to-peer interaction, were other important design considerations. Each feature so thoughtfully designed for the new building encourages the Board of Trustees and the Staff to dedicate the future to the core mission to educate, enrich, inspire, and entertain—the Glenview Public Library, a decade in the making and a legacy to the generations.
Find more historic images from Glenview Public Library’s past on our Flickr page.