Wilton Library to Become Community's "Living Room"

The Wilton Library Association selected TSKP STUDIO to provide architectural design services for approximately $8.7 million in improvements to its library, in order to more than double the square footage of the existing 17,000 sf building and to better serve the library's function as the cultural hub and "living room" of the community.

In addition to traditional areas for book stacks and reading, the Association expects to create spaces for: community programs and meetings, computer training, local history materials, a gallery, quiet study, teens, children's arts and crafts, media, parenting and storytelling.

The Association chose TSKP STUDIO because of its award-winning architecture in the modernist tradition and proven design talents demonstrated at the Cider Mill School, Wilton, according to Malcolm Whyte, AIA, chair of the Library's building committee. Other recent works that showcase the firm's creative approach and sensitivity to client interests and concerns are the master planning and design for Northwestern Connecticut Community College, with a new library now under construction; design of Ross Commons, a residential dining quad at Middlebury College, Vermont; master planning and design for the new 21-acre U.S. Embassy Compound, Tunisia; and the main lobby design for the historic Wadsworth Atheneum, Hartford.

Whyte notes that Eliot Noyes designed the original Wilton Library in 1974, and believes it is one of Noyes' finest non-residential projects. His early architectural practice was in the New Canaan area with Marcel Breuer and Phillip Johnson, and he later formed a partnership practice with Allan Goldbert. Whyte knew Elliott from his own work at IBM overseeing international facilities.

After graduation from Harvard (1938) Noyes was employed by Marcel Breuer and Walter Gropius, and served as a curator at the Museum of Modern Art, directing the department of industrial design there in 1940. From the early 50s until his death in 1977, Noyes served as a design consultant to IBM, along with other notable designers such as Charles and Ray Eames. He provided consultation on everything from interior design, to graphics and product design, such as the Selectric typewriter in 1959.

According to the American Library Association, large and small communities have been reinvesting in libraries as centers of learning, literacy and culture in the Information Age. Across the nation, many communities have been building or renovating main and branch libraries to reflect the need for new and expanded services.

News Archive