As the city of Spanish Fork has continued to experience enormous growth in recent years, so have the needs of the city’s public services. In recent years, it became evident that the city’s administrative offices had outgrown their current home, the historic Thurber School Building. Additionally, the city’s existing main library has been determined to be too small and too inflexible in its configuration to meet the resident’s current needs.
In response, Spanish Fork decided to have a new city facility designed and constructed: a single building that would include approximately 33,000 SF dedicated to new library services, as well as 12,000 SF dedicated to city administrative services (finance department, city council chambers, and a large multi-purpose room). Working with Blalock and Partners, the project team determined the optimal size, configuration, and position of the new building, all with the following goals:
- Create a civic campus that responds to the prominent downtown location;
- Provide a high-quality patron experience with elevated conveniences.
The design process included a public outreach portion where a plethora of comments from local residents were received and reviewed. Comments regarding the overall building’s design aesthetic were a common theme, so the design team placed these comments on a sliding scale between “traditional” and “modern”. Categorizing the comments in this manner allowed for better ease of sorting the large quantity of comments; the design team’s interpretation of these comments formed general principles for incorporation into the final building design:
- Design should exercise restraint;
- Design should be representative of the era in which it was built, but should also respect the contexts in which it resides;
- Design should be authentic to the community of Spanish Fork.
The final building design features large light toned brick masses punctured by slender rhythmic windows, both of which are features that pay homage to the adjacent historic Thurber School. These masses are contrasted by more contemporary large spans of glass that allow an abundance of natural light to filter into the library spaces. Slender roof planes cap the glass and hover over the brick walls, allowing for a cohesive bridging between traditional and modern elements.
Construction of the building will be completed early 2023.