The Newbern Library is an adaptive reuse project of a bank building built in 1906. The student team navigated the project throughout conception, fund raising, design, construction management, and physical construction. Through the process of designing and making the building, the team coordinated with consultants, community partners, and fabricators, producing design and detailed construction documents, sourced materials, and organized schedules and budgets. The preserved masonry shell of the existing building contrasts with the addition, which is clad in local cypress siding. Bookshelves center a new space within the width of the old building creating a room where readers are immersed in books. The modular bookshelves are made of birch plywood, and were CNC-milled, finished, and assembled on site. Complementing the larger public space, a series of alcoves within the bookshelves accommodate computers, private study nooks, window seats, storage closets, bathrooms, and access the outdoors. The artifacts from the original building, such as the old heart pine floors and bank vault door, were repurposed and preserved inside the new space. A courtyard to the north of the building provides library patrons with shaded outdoor reading and activity space.
The four 5th-year students, Ashley Clark, Morgan Acino, Stephen Durham, and Will Gregory, recently completed the new (and first-ever) library for the town of Newbern.