Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Mancos Public Library Architect Listens to Residents

Last weekend, architect Dennis Humphries spent a lot of time meeting Mancos residents and hearing a variety of requests for the design of the planned 6,800 square foot library facility south of the Mancos River.

During a visit to a Senior Center lunch on November 17, the architect hear requests for signs showing different sections in the library, a floor plan and directory near the entrance, sitting and rest areas throughout the interior and exterior, accessible bathroom facilities and bicycle racks.
During the November 18 public meeting at the Community Center, residents wrote their requests on colored "post-it" notes and placed them on large sheets with titles like "public meeting rooms," "children's area," and "general exterior."

Attendees had dozens of suggestions and requests, including picture and art displays, a historical collection room, computers and wireless Internet and high quality acoustics.

Other requests included as much natural lighting as possible and "smart" building innovations such as low water suage and grey water usage for landscaping.

Further discussion about the building's exterior revealed other environmental and cultural concerns. Passive solar power was one suggestion. Another was minimal light pollution. "Only 20 percent of North Americans see the Milky Way," one attendee said, voicing a request for controlled lighting of outdoor areas.

Other discussion items were technology for online cattle auctions and teleconferencing, used book storage, a solarium entrance with native plants as a learning tool, storm water management, an outdoor courtyard on the river with summer seating, a balcony overlooking the Mancos River and the use of local materials for the exterior.

Attendees discussed building styles, with requests for a structure that would blend with and echo elements of older Mancos building such as the Bauer Bank Building. Other attendees wanted to incorporate a Mesa Verde architectural theme, reflecting the Native American influence in the region. Participants rejected, "Southewestern Spanish stucco."

Other requests for the building included self-cleaning glass windows, a brick kiva, a place to safely tie dogs up, handicap accessability and in-floor heating. One resident wsaid he wanted to see a sense of "whimsy" incorporated into the design. "Let's push the edge, but still live within the vernacular," Humphries said.

Humphries will take the community input he received during his visit and develop several proposed plans with a return visit scheduled after the first of the year. "I've got my work cut out for me," he said.


From the Mancos Times

No comments: