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Watertown Free Public Library

Architects Shaw & Hunnewell designed the original Watertown Free Public Library in 1884. Located prominently on Main Street in the heart of Watertown, this French Renaissance style structure has undergone several additions and renovations over the years. The most significant expansion occurred in 1956 with a modern brick and glass structure.

The new design by LLB Architects, fully implemented by August 2006 at a cost of $9 million, removed the later additions and restored the historic 6,000 sf red brick and brownstone library. The new 38,000 sf addition connects its main entrances with a two-story corridor/central spine that is washed with natural light from a skylight above, and provides a monumental stair connecting the two levels. The scale and materials of the addition are sensitive to the existing historic buildings. The design also reestablishes the street edge and creates a vibrant new urban green space showcasing the historic library structure.

Photography by Warren Jagger Photography

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