Saturday is the big day. The new $125 million Austin Central Library opens to the public Saturday, October 28th with a whole day of live music and activities. The day will begin at 10am just outside of the library and there will be a ribbon cutting ceremony at 11am. The library will actually open its doors at 1pm.
As a reminder, some features of the new library include:
- Lots of bicycle parking
- A Recycled Reads gift boutique
- Rooftop garden, irrigated with captured rainwater and reclaimed wastewater
- 180-kilowatt solar array, which also provides shade for the rooftop garden. This is the largest rooftop solar installation in downtown Austin.
- Aiming for a LEED Platinum certification, which is the highest rating possible under the LEED green building rating system.
- A tech petting zoo, which will allow Austinites to try out new and innovative technologies
- 150 self-check Macbooks, iPads, and Chromebooks
- Outdoor reading porches with views of Lady Bird Lake
(More information about the new library can be found in our latest Shades of Green podcast, which you can listen to above)
Going to the grand opening? Just remember that parking will be extremely limited, so the City of Austin is encouraging everyone to take alternative transportation. Options include:
- Capital Metro free park and ride – from noon to 5pm you can park at one of five Austin Public Library branches (Carver, Little Walnut Creek, Pleasant Hill, Ruiz, and the Recycled Reads bookstore), go inside to request a free day pass, and then ride the bus downtown
- Ride your bike – the library will have plenty of bike parking onsite
- Take Austin B-cycle – a full list of stations is available here
- Walk – 350 Austin is leading a hike to the library from Zilker Park and the Shoal Creek Conservancy is leading a Shoal Creek Tour that will end at the library
*One more thing – Starting this month, Austin Public Library cardholders now have access to Kanopy, an on-demand video streaming service with 30,000 films available for viewing. The films include documentaries, independent films, and hard-to-find titles. Plus, you can access them all from the comfort of your own home. All you need is a library card. More info>> *