New Mexico State Library

Library Construction and Renovation Projects

Library construction projects require much planning and consideration. This guide provides resources to help with your new construction or renovation project.

If you know of additional resources, architects, or advice to include in this guide, please let us know by calling 800-340-3890.

Planning Resources


6 Tips to Surviving Library Construction: Wisdom from the library leaders who pulled off 12 renovations in seven months

ADA Accessibility Guidelines for Buildings and Facilities

Building Libraries and Library Additions: A Selected Annotated Bibliography

Library Building Consultants List (scroll to the very bottom to obtain a list of consultant names by state or specialty free of charge)

Library Space Planning Guide

Libris Design Planning Documentation

Planning and Building Libraries

Practical Tips for Library Building Design

The Public Library Construction Process: From Problem Recognition to Ribbon Snipping

Public Library Space Needs: A Planning Outline

Toolkit for Planning and Building Public Libraries

Books at the State Library available through ILL:

Brawner, Lee B., and Donald K. Beck, Jr. Determining your public library’s future size: a needs assessment and planning model. Chicago: American Library Association, 1996.

Brown, Carol R. Interior design for libraries: drawing on function and appeal. Chicago: American Library Association, 2002.

Dahlgren, Anders. Planning the small library facility. Chicago: Library Administration and Management Association, American Library Association, 1996.

Dewe, Michael. Planning public library buildings: concepts and issues for the librarian. Aldershot, England; Burlington, VT: Ashgate Pub., 2006.

Hagloch, Susan B. Library building projects: tips for survival. Englewood, Colo.: Libraries Unlimited, 1994.

Lushington, Nolan. Libraries designed for users: a 21st century guide. New York: Neal-Schuman Publishers, 2002.

McCabe, Gerard B. Planning for a new generation of public library buildings. Westport, Conn.: Greenwood Press, 2000.

McCabe, Gerard B., and James R. Kennedy, editors. Planning the modern public library building. Westport, Conn.: Libraries Unlimited, 2003.

McCarthy, Richard C. Designing better libraries: selecting and working with building professionals. Fort Atkinson, Wis.: Highsmith Press, 1995.

Sannwald, William W., editor. Checklist of library building design considerations. Chicago: American Library Association, 2001.

Woodward, Jeannette A. Countdown to a new library: managing the building project. Chicago: American Library Association, 2000.

Local Architects with Library Experience

These architectural firms have successfully worked with public libraries in New Mexico in the last few years. Note: This list is provided only for your information. The New Mexico State Library, nor any of its employees, endorse these particular architects.

Albuquerque / Bernalillo County Library System

Integrated Design & Architecture
624 Tijeras Ave NW, Albuquerque

Cherry/See/Reames Architects
220 Gold Ave SW, Albuquerque

Kells + Craig Architects
400 Gold St SW, Suite 880, Albuquerque
505-243-2724 (Sam Edwards) or (Jonathan Craig)

Lee Gamelsky Architects
2412 Miles Rd SE, Albuquerque

Belen Public Library

Molzen-Corbin & Associates
Albuquerque Office:
2701 Miles Rd SE, Albuquerque
Las Cruces Office:
1155 Commerce Dr, Suite F, Las Cruces

Advice for Funding Sources

from NM libraries that have received construction funding recently

  • City bonds
  • Friends groups
  • General Obligation Bonds
  • State Capital Outlay
  • Individual, corporate, and nonprofit donors in the community
  • Rural Development Council
  • Sell tiles or bricks to be engraved with donor’s name and incorporated in the building or landscaping
  • Ask local building contractors for donations

General Advice

Make sure your entire community is aware of the need for the project. Sometimes help comes from surprising quarters.

–Beverly McFarland, Belen Public Library

Invest in a Facilities Plan in which architects and/or building consultants assess current facilities and make recommendations for renovations and new buildings. This will give you a better sense of community needs, the soundness of your facilities, and a professional plan to help raise funds and garner support.

–Julia Clarke, Albuquerque / Bernalillo County Library System