In June 2009, Collin College opened the Central Park Library in McKinney, Texas. The design successfully combines timeless classical architecture with 21st-century innovation, creating a true learning-centered environment. The library presents itself as a showcase of Jeffersonian architecture; a grand entry leads to a rotunda bathed COST PER SQ FT$223.89FEATURED IN2010 Educational InteriorsINTERIOR CATEGORYLibraries/Media Centers sunlight, with arched windows, tall columns, marble parquet flooring and a stone staircase that leads to the second-floor gallery.
The challenge to create an accommodating atmosphere of open communication for students and professors was met by designing a learning community within a teaching library. The flexible plan has lecture rooms, laboratories and faculty offices on the second floor encircling a grand reading room below. Students have a variety of research settings: group and private study areas, interspersed lounge seating or in the library’s cafe—all of which contain the latest computer technology. The interior finishes include wood paneling, stainless steel, marble and an expansive wall of windows framing cottonwood trees.
Completed in 28 months and while classes were in session, the library incorporates a centralized chilled-water system, automated building controls, energy-efficient lighting and HVAC equipment throughout. The result is a modern architectural environment that serves as a catalyst for student achievement.