Project Type: New/Renovation
Construction Cost: $16 M
Size: 25,987 SF


Grafton Public Library

Grafton, MA

The Grafton Public Library, established in 1876, has existed on the Grafton Common since 1927 in a Georgian style building. The impressively detailed historic structure remains very close to its original state, with Palladian windows, a cupola, and a vaulted main reading room. DRA’s proposal was to remove 3,390 SF of non-code compliant book stack space which was added in the mid-century and then construct a new addition.

With a “book-end” design concept, patrons may enter the building from Grafton common, or from the new entrance which mimics the proportions and stature of the original shell. A main gallery with vaulted skylight above, and study rooms along the length, connects the two ends. The design reflects the community’s desire to build in an historically sympathetic style, while allowing generous natural light and views into the main children’s and adult reading areas. While the exterior design may be historically reflective, the interior design is state of the art, allowing both staff and patrons to be completely flexible with all technology planned to be mobile.

The project includes over 100 reader seats, shelving to accommodate 20-year growth, and enough parking to serve the community, plus a flexible meeting room, tutoring/quiet study rooms, a teen area, a youth services program room, climate-controlled space for historical collections, dedicated staff office space, an automated materials handling system, and self-check-out. Rooftop gardens and patios extend the facility by providing outdoor space to read, connect, and reflect.

Project Leadership

Kenneth C. Best, AIA

ALA, CSI | Principal

Ron Paolillo

M. Arch., Associate AIA | Project Manager
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