Reimagining West Park Branch

 

The Cleveland Public Library, West Park Branch was built in 1928 with an addition housing a new entry and restrooms built in 1978. It is located at 3805 West 157th Street on the city’s west side. It is near the corner of 157th and Lorain with the entry and parking in the rear off of Silsby Road. The building is 14,400sf with an occupied basement. Collections, and children’s areas are on the first floor with a meeting rooms storage and mechanical spaces in a basement with no elevator access. The original building is clad in red brick with stone trim and a slate roof. The windows are original wood and leaded glass with outboard storms installed. The addition is red brick with a flat roof. The original vaulted ceiling and clerestory windows have been covered by a dropped ceiling.

 

Aerial View of West Park

Branch Statistics

Location: 3805 West 157th St
Year Constructed: 1928 (renovated 1978)
Size: 14,400 sf
Parking:
22 spaces

Steering Committee

Jane Doe, Joe Doe, Mo Doe, Les Doe

Image: Aerial View of West Park Branch

 

Outreach Summary

The two primary concerns for West Park patrons were the deferred maintenance, particularly around the entrance from the parking lot, and the limited parking area. Additionally, though the basement meeting rooms are quite large, lack of accessibility is a barrier for programming them. Meeting attendees were open to the idea of relocating the branch entirely if need be, particularly in collaboration with the nearby YMCA facility. However, a potential alternative would be to remove & rebuild the building addition from the historic Walker & Weeks building, install a new back entrance to the parking lot, and add an elevator to the basement area. This addition could also provide space for a teen room, which patrons felt was important. Expanding the parking lot is also a top priority, as is improved signage/landscaping for visibility of the branch along Lorain Ave.

Primary Community Needs

  • Find opportunities for expanded parking
  • Address ongoing maintenance and upkeep issues
  • Investigate rebuilding existing addition to address maintenance, entry, and accessibility needs
  • Add elevator to make downstairs rooms accessible
  • Overhaul front entrance and ramp access
  • Explore reopening original entrance on W 157th for pedestrian access
  • Create a separate space for teens
  • Explore additional types of seating and study areas
  • Use “front lawn” area for better signage, landscaping, lighting along Lorain Ave.
  • Pursue collaborations (and perhaps consolidation?) with YMCA
  • Expand programming and events geared to families and seniors
  • Explore staying open later on weeknights and on Sundays

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