The BiblioTech Public Library was conceived as an innovative, cost effective method for creating a new, 21st century modern library system for Bexar County. Alta Architects was honored to collaborate with Bexar County leadership in conceptualizing Judge Nelson Wolff’s vision of a “bookless” library. This vision was first realized at BiblioTech South, and Alta Architects continued working with Bexar County to refine the BiblioTech concept for smaller, leased spaces in San Antonio Housing Authority facilities to address the “digital deserts” in underserved communities.
The next evolution in the BiblioTech Public Library system is BiblioTech EDU, a hybrid school library and public library, serving the Fox Tech High School campus during school hours, and the San Antonio community when school is not in session. BiblioTech EDU is a reconceptualization of the existing Fox Tech school library, offering a vision of 21st century learning where the spaces are primarily dedicated to digital resources and collaborative spaces, rather than taken up by traditional stacks and printed materials.
The educational spaces in BiblioTech EDU are wide ranging to accommodate a variety of teaching methods and learning styles. As we learned from the existing branches, the group study rooms are very well used, and offer a space for small groups to meet and collaborate. Quiet rooms and lounge seating accommodate the individual learner. The “hands on”, interactive learning spaces include a makers lab, recording studio, and robotics labs. All of these flexible spaces can be configured as needed, and offer flexibility to host new programs in the future.
This type of flexibility is critical in meeting the needs of the Bexar County community when BiblioTech EDU is open as a public library. All the resources of the fifty station reading room, group study rooms, and community rooms, can be easily modified and tailored to serve the public. The design of BiblioTechEDU serves both the mission of school library and public library, and maximizes the resources of the Bexar County and SAISD in a single, dynamic and beautiful learning space.
San Antonio, TX
Facilities Management Department Director
Final Construction Cost:
($100k In Owner Added Scope)
Geoffrey S. Edwards, AIA, LEED AP BD+C
Rob Reiter, AIA, LEED AP
Claudia Carlos, AIA, RID, LEED AP
Landscape: Laffoon Associates
Structural: RSCR, Inc.
MEP/Technology: CNG Engineering