james richärd, aia principal


kelly bauer, fiida principal



stephen kennedy, aia ncarb principal



1545 west thomas road
phoenix, arizona 85015
p 602 264 1955
f 602 264 9234


quince douglas library, tucson

Tucson, AZ

City of Tucson

10,500 sf / 1.5M / Completed 2005

This full-service, stand-alone branch library with a 60,000 item book collection that includes a computer lab, study and meeting rooms and dedicated spaces for a full range of programs for the community including Homework Help and Storytime programs. The facility also includes an exterior reading court for patrons and a dedicated staff courtyard as an extension of the staff area.



This project is the hybrid of two seemingly disparate elements: a new public branch library and a new pedestrian bridge. This symbiotic relationship benefits both projects by combining resources and budgets in the development of common architectural vocabulary, exterior spaces, pedestrian linkages and landscape features.

The building is organized as a single open volume under a series of large shading roof forms, lending complexity and drama to the space and capturing panoramic mountain views to the north. The roof is lifted to balance north light and south daylight components while shading the interior from direct solar gain.

The elliptical form of the staff area is used as a foil at the entry to direct patrons into the building. Building services are located below the future bridge abutment for noise isolation, security and access. The discrete areas; meeting room, group and computer rooms, as well as the children’s area are located along the southern edge under the lowest portion of the roof. The higher volume is preserved for the open collection and reading areas. An accessible exterior reading court captures panoramic views of the mountains to the north.

One of the primary goals was to develop a modern facility that worked in concert with an adjacent existing recreation center without mimic and to establish an independent image for the library. Our library work has taught us that the independent image of the facility is critical to public perception and long term success. Libraries integrated into other facilities are often perceived as temporary or make due financial compromises.

Photography: Bill Timmerman