Location: Madison, WI
Client: Madison Metropolitan School District
Designer: Steven Gower, Demco Design Supervisor
Population Served: 495 Students
Completion Date: October 2015
- Flexible furniture accommodates a variety of learning activities
- A dedicated makerspace provides an area to explore, create and invent
- Soft seating and inviting colors encourage students to relax and learn
Library Media Technology Specialist Monica Millen’s vision for Huegel Elementary’s new library was “an open, flexible space that would accommodate a wide variety of daily needs of teachers and students, including large-group instructional space, small-group work tables, comfortable and quiet reading areas, tutoring spots, inviting book browsing, a conveniently located circulation desk, storage, space for student creation (makerspace), and collaboration areas.”
To achieve this multi-functional use of the library, Millen worked with DEMCO Interiors to define areas within the space modeled around campfire, watering hole and cave learning arrangements. The team provided flexible seating, mobile furniture, and mobile meeting and instructional tables that could be moved throughout the day as needed.
The school also wanted to create a space that could be calm and restful as well as fun and inviting, said Millen. The DEMCO Interiors team achieved this by installing attractive, light-grained ColorScape® shelving that helps invite light into the space, which sees minimal sunlight.
The color scheme used throughout is welcoming. Soft seating, including Community Encore Lounge Seating and comfy Jupiter Stools, provides comfort and can be reconfigured throughout the library space. Picture Book Mobile Browsers give users easy access to books, and a unique cave space, featuring a skylight that invites natural light, provides a cozy respite for readers.
“Students use the soft seating and reading cave for silent and partner reading,” said Millen. “It is delightful to see them enjoying books frequently.”
“Part of the remodel was to fill in open walls with doors and display cases. Because of this, and the calm atmosphere created by the color scheme and organized, thoughtful layout, the library is peaceful and visits are purposeful,” said Millen.
Huegel’s uniquely circular library space originally included a large, round circulation desk that took up a major portion of the central space. The old desk was removed and replaced with a modern ColorScape® circulation desk situated in another area, which enabled the central area to be converted into a makerspace. The new makerspace includes four large mobile tables that feature locking wheels and storage underneath for supplies.
With the help of DEMCO Interiors, Huegel Elementary now has a multifunctional library space that supports the entire learning process.
“Our school community has a much more positive attitude about reading and learning. Every child feels welcome in the library because it is designed for children. All children have access to an inviting, exciting place to learn and grow, to look for answers to their questions, to pursue their interests, and to learn in a way that works best for them. I have been told that the new library has made a very positive change in the entire school culture; children are excited about visiting the library to try new (and old) tools and ideas.”