Kevin Street Library
Library in the heart of Dublin, Ireland
Kevin Street Library is uniquely placed, straddling the retail heart of the city and the traditional communities of inner city Dublin.
The building itself is a modest but important one, and though not a protected structure, it has served as a public library for over 100 years. It boasts beautiful reading rooms that have been hidden from public view for many years. The interior is bright, airy, and charming with substantial natural light.
Statement from the library
"Working with thedesignconcept ltd. is always a pleasure… and not just because they’re all very nice people.
There’s the pleasure in knowing that the hard work and care that we’ve put in to getting our libraries to fit-out stage is appreciated and carried on by thedesignconcept ltd. staff from the person who’s completing the tender documents to the person who puts in the last bolt before leaving.
There’s the pleasure in knowing that there’s the safety net of thedesignconcept ltd.'s experience to catch you when you’re taking a risk.
There’s the pleasure in seeing your vision translated into actual design solutions. There’s the pleasure in seeing your library users walking through the doors on the day of reopening and watching their reactions.
To Iain, Daniela, John, Liz and Sharn, thanks for all your efforts in making Kevin Street Library a jewel in our branch network."
Paul Fusco Divisional Librarian
Finance & Facilities Management
Dublin City Public Libraries
An encouraging, productive place
“The library needs to be more to its users than just a place to undertake necessary tasks; it needs to be a space that offers a desirable experience, a place that is inviting, comfortable, and refreshing. It should encourage users to enjoy the luxury of stopping, relaxing, and thinking or reading for a while in a reflective space.
It should feel like an encouraging, productive place, which should be someone’s first choice when holding a meeting or event. It should be the beating heart of its community- the library should be a home away from home. It is important that the furniture and fit-out reflect the honesty of the building, complementing the interior without resorting to fauxhistoricism or pastiche.”
This was the tender brief put forward by Dublin City Council when looking for a designer for the renovated Kevin Street Library space.
A special place for children
“To engage children, it’s important that the furniture provided for them be dynamic, interactive, and novel. It’s crucial that the children’s section of the library genuinely caters to their needs, rather than just being a smaller version of the adult space.”
This was the brief aspiration for the childrens zone and the end result is incredible! It features a giant 84” TV Screen, PC’s and an interactive digital table, a feature storytelling chair and vibrant elephant chairs for the little ones to play or sit on and flick through a huge selection of books. For the more energetic there’s even a SLIDE - a feature that will be remain a fond memory throughout the lives of the children who use it.
What we have done
Thedesignconcept ltd. presented the winning bid and the end result is something extremely special. The newly refurbished library now contains:
- An adult library space where modern furniture blends seamlessly with the traditional feel of the room. Shelving is flexible and can be easily moved to cater for public events. High back chairs with acoustic properties and fitted tables give users a sense of privacy and somewhere to use their own laptops/devices.
- An adjacent authentic reading room to sit, relax and enjoy the latest read in, with beautiful walnut and leather chairs that complement the restored shelving perfectly.
- A display area with virtual exhibitions running on digital screens alongside physical displays.
- Computers downstairs that are housed on a stunning “tree inspired” desk unit with integral overhead lighting.
- The first floor has a suite of PC’s along with private study spaces housed on state of the art furniture.