Architectural firm selected to design building, oversee construction
The Spring Hill Board of Mayor and Alderman on June 30 approved this year’s City budget, which includes funding for the design of a new, state-of-the-art public library facility.
This decision comes after a great deal of work by the Spring Hill Library Board of Trustees (LBOT) and the Friends of the Spring Hill Public Library who jointly championed the need for the facility.
It remains to be determined if the new library will be a newly constructed building or an addition to the existing building. Under either scenario, the location of the Spring Hill Public Library will remain on Kedron Parkway.
Fifteen architectural firms from multiple states expressed interest in developing the design and overseeing construction of Spring Hill’s new library facility. These firms were evaluated by the LBOT with in-person presentations by the three finalist firms. LBOT Vice Chair Brandon McCulloch noted that the review of firms was an extensive vetting process with a great deal of discussion on each firm’s history in the development and construction of public library facilities. Former City Librarian Gail Adkins, now a member of the LBOT, further noted that with the heavy use of electronic media of all types within public libraries, it presents unique design challenges.
Among the three finalists, HBM Architects of Cleveland, Ohio, was selected to design and oversee the construction of the new Spring Hill Public Library. In making the announcement of HBM Architects, LBOT Chair Trent Jones noted that HBM is recognized as a national leader in the design of public library facilities having completed past projects in more than 15 states, including Tennessee. This will be the first facility in Spring Hill to be designed specifically as a public library, making the achievement of quality results of even greater importance. The library also wants to be good stewards of the funds needed to complete this project while also delivering an outstanding facility, so the selection of a top-notch firm was important, Mr. Jones said.
The need for a new facility is without question, as the service area of the Spring Hill Public Library is now more than 52,000 individuals, according to data from the Tennessee State Library and Archives. The challenge is to create a facility that meets as many needs as possible, such as public meeting rooms, enhanced collections, ample research space, and available areas for the creativity of citizens. To ensure the latter, Wendy Lord, president of the Friends group, has announced the group’s pledge to raise $35,000 for a Makers Space area in the new building.
Oversight of the project will be with the Public Library Building Executive Committee composed of Assistant City Administrator Chuck Downham, City Finance Director James H. Smith, LBOT member and Alderman Bruce Hull, LBOT Vice Chair McCulloch, and LBOT Chair Jones. Ex-officio members will be the other members of the Library Board of Trustees, Library Director Hulen Bivins, and the president of the Friends of the Spring Hill Public Library.