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Saskatoon Public Library releases concept design of new central library

The exterior of the concept design of Saskatoon’s new central library references the First Nation tipi, while the interior mass timber structure is drawn from the Métis log cabin.
The exterior of the concept design of Saskatoon’s new central library references the First Nation tipi, while the interior mass timber structure is drawn from the Métis log cabin. Saskatoon Public Library

Saskatonians are getting their first look at the concept design of the new central Saskatoon Public Library building.

The SPL said the vision of the building draws upon its strategic vision to “infuse the spirit and potential of the community,” with the concept drawing inspiration from traditional First Nation and Métis architecture.

Read more: Saskatoon builders frustrated local design firms lose bid for $4.8M library contract

The exterior of the building references the First Nation tipi, while the interior mass timber structure is drawn from the Métis log cabin.

“Both First Nations and Métis people oriented buildings outward toward the landscape, demonstrating a deep connection to nature and preserving links to the natural environment, with which the structures interacted,” said the concept design report released Monday.

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“The design for the new central library and the placement on the site endeavours to provide continuity with the surrounding landscape.”

The building will be 136,000 square feet over four levels. The SPL said it will be fully accessible and will be a leader in reconciliation and environmental sustainability.

“With the design concept for the new central library complete, it is exciting to see this project quite literally taking shape,” said SPL CEO Carol Cooley.

“Phase two of the design process is critical, as it will directly inform floor plans and room characteristics, so we encourage all residents to share their thoughts with us during this process.”

Read more: Indigenous architect Alfred Waugh tapped to design new downtown Saskatoon library

The public can take part in virtual conversations with the design team on June 13 and 14, or complete an online survey to give their thoughts, the SPL said.

Kits are also available that can be completed during this process.

The 14 members of the SPL’s resident advisory committee will also provide input during this phase, which runs from June 1 to June 25.

The SPL said two independent cost consultations have estimated the total cost of the project at this stage of the design is under the construction budget of $73.3 million.

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The new central library is scheduled to open in 2026 at 321 2nd Ave. N.

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Saskatoon builders frustrated local design firms lose bid for $4.8M library contract – Nov 26, 2020

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