Patrick Heath Public Library

Boerne, Texas

A civic centerpiece that connects to nature

Patrick Heath Public Library is part of a master-planned civic center complex nestled along a creek in Boerne, Texas. The two-story, 30,000-square-foot facility includes an Internet café, children’s library, teen hub and a variety of adult reading areas, reflecting the interests of the community

The LEED Gold-certified facility, the community’s only library, was oriented on the creek to take full advantage of the park-like setting and the connections to nature. The exterior of limestone, metal and glass reflect native materials and the goal of adding transparency and natural light to the building. Reclaimed regional Longleaf Pine was used for pivot walls. Tall windows on the east side showcase the creek and the wooded Hill Country.

The interior of the building is designed to provide comfortable reading areas and spaces that encourage lifelong learning. An elevated screen porch and terraces connect the indoor and outdoor areas. Quiet nooks and crannies can be found throughout the space.

Energy efficiency and water conservation were central themes of the project’s design. Metal overhangs provide shade and decrease temperature gains on the tall windows. A rainwater harvesting system with large cisterns preserve water on site and serve as a teaching tool for the community.

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