Raised Access Floors: Bringing Flexibility to Libraries

30 August 2022 Tate
Costa-Mesa-Public-Library-2019-54

Libraries today provide a wide range of services that go above-and-beyond simply lending books, so the design of the space needs to accommodate those services and support patrons and employees alike. Raised access floors with Underfloor Service and Air Distribution increase flexibility while creating a reconfigurable space to be used for other functions such as community gatherings, activities or events. Here are a few examples of libraries throughout North America that are benefiting from raised access flooring. 

Donald Dungan Library at Lions Park

Costa-Mesa-Public-Library-2019-113

The Costa Mesa Library was designed with unique architectural elements, high ceilings and large windows for increased access to daylight, making it an ideal candidate for raised access floors. By utilizing Underfloor Service and Air Distribution, the library eliminated the need for overhead ductwork, which helped highlight the architectural design, improve the indoor air quality and contribute to the library’s LEED Gold certification. 

“The Costa Mesa Library utilizes a Tate raised floor system that provides several environmental benefits as well as contributes to the energy-efficient sustainable design strategy that resulted in a LEED Gold certification. This scheme enabled us to reduce the size of air handling equipment as a smaller volume of conditioned air is supplied where it is needed in contrast with a higher volume of air blown from a distant ceiling location. Reduced equipment size, reduced initial construction cost as well as on-going maintenance and energy costs.” —Steve Johnson, President of Johnson Favaro 

Read the full case study here.

Costa Mesa Library from Johnson Favaro Architecture on Vimeo:

Seattle Public Library

seattlelibrary_exterior

The Seattle Public Library was designed with architectural creativity and sustainability in mind and is a major architectural wonder for the city of Seattle. Its all glass and aluminum exterior and variable geometry design provides a spectacular visual sight, while allowing for a high degree of natural light for the occupants. This design was made possible with raised access floors with Underfloor Air Distribution. By removing the overhead ductwork required in a traditional overhead air distribution system and placing those services below the floor, you emphasize the high ceilings, architectural details and large windows with natural light. This system also contributes to the building’s sustainability goals and improves the indoor air quality of the library. 

Read the full case study here.

Calgary Central Library

Calgary Central Library

Calgary Public Library is one of the most actively used library systems in North America. To accommodate its increasing visitor count, the library expanded and established a new main branch with the addition of a 240,000 square-foot facility. The Central Library utilizes raised access floors, designed to feature some unique finish applications and customized transition details to allow the architects to balance the flexibility of the raised floor with the overall aesthetic goals of the library. Factory-laminated, multi-piece porcelain flooring creates a stunning visual while maintaining accessibility to the Underfloor Service Distribution. 

Read the full case study here.

Northeast Louisville Public Library

Northeast Louisville Public Library

The raised access floor system in the Northeast Louisville Public Library is used to supply and connect power, data and air to the different areas of the building. These services are used throughout the library, including the large meeting room and an innovative, hands-on “makerspace” that is home to a recording studio and a demonstration kitchen. The system allowed the designers to incorporate green building construction methods and materials, while giving the library the chance to save energy, improve indoor air quality and reduce operating costs. The library also used a combination of floor finishes, including STONEWORKS Classic Concrete, to achieve their desired design aesthetic. 

Read the full case study here.

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