Exploration Commons at the Westminster Library
The Exploration Commons Renovation at the Westminster Library consists of an entire fit-out of the existing 13,046 SF basement shell space, as well as the addition of an exterior elevator and stair. The key features of the basement fit-out include a makerspace, commercial teaching kitchen and culinary center, and a large scale meeting room. The makerspace includes numerous materials to inspire creativity such as 3D printers, a lab space (inclusive of a laser cutter and CNC machine) as well as Virtual Reality and audio/visual spaces. The teaching kitchen includes an entire commercial cook-line, teaching island, commercial grade refrigerators, and dishwashers. The teaching island is complete with an overhead camera projecting to nearby TV’s to allow students a direct view of what the instructor is doing without crowding around. The large scale meeting room is sized to accommodate community meetings as well as ADA compliant men’s, women’s, and family toilet rooms.
The project also included a 430 SF two-story addition to serve as the new main entrance into the space, as well as to provide a new elevator and communicating stair. Both the basement and addition were fully-sprinklered to meet fire safety requirements. Site improvements were also made including new landscaping, paving, parking striping, new utility connections, etc. Alterations were made to the MEP rooms on the existing first floor of the library and lower level of the “rectory”. New mechanical equipment was installed on the first-floor roof, which in turn required additional structural support on the first-floor roof. There will also be new penetrations through the first floor of the existing library and roof for various MEP items such as ductwork and vents.