Lewes Public Library design committee members and others have good things to say about the most recent exterior design for the new library.
Brad Hastings, an architect with Becker Morgan Group Architecture Engineering, said the design echoes architectural elements from Lewes’ maritime roots. Hastings gave a presentation to the library design panel Sept. 4.
He said the building’s board and batten siding, cupolas and gables reflect lifesaving station designs found in Lewes and elsewhere along Delaware's coast.
The building design also incorporates clerestory windows along the ridge of its longest axis, reflecting other buildings in the Lewes area where clerestory windows were used.
Popular in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, the clerestory design allows natural light and air to flow into buildings. The building’s entire exterior design uses materials and architectural components to break up mass of the 28,000 square-foot structure, lending it scale and a feel of smaller buildings and streetscapes that comprise the city’s general architectural mix.
Hastings showed slides of the historic Lewes Lifesaving Station and of an iconic, one-story train station – with hip roofs and wide overhanging eves – that, he said, also informed the proposed library’s overall architecture.
The structure’s design has no back; rather, each side of the building connects with its park setting so that it is attractive from any viewpoint.
Ned Butera, design committee chairman and a Lewes Public Library board member, said Becker Morgan Group architects would continue tweaking the design over the next few weeks based on committee comments and suggestions from others.
To see additional information about the Lewes Public Library and evolution of new building plans, go to www.lewespubliclibrary.org.