Work is underway to convert the shuttered Canyon Electric Building into a two-story library spanning 7,000 square feet in downtown North Las Vegas as part of a larger effort to redevelop one of the city’s oldest neighborhoods.
The new North Las Vegas Main Downtown Library is set to open in October 2019 at White Street and Lake Mead Boulevard, replacing the 3,000-square-foot library space on the first floor of City Hall.
“I get really super excited about it because we’re working toward making a dream real,” said Gina Gavan, economic and business development director for North Las Vegas.
“City Hall has been a great transitional place for the library, but now we have the capability to expand, offer technology and become accessible to the neighborhood,” Gavan said. “It’s going to be such a statement piece.”
Conceptual renderings by Las Vegas-based SH Architecture illustrate wide, open spaces with a circulation desk, an artwork wall, an outdoor reading patio and areas for adult and children’s books on the first floor.
Upstairs, the library will be equipped with meeting rooms, offices, study spaces, a computer lab and a career center.
“The thought behind this design is to create an inviting space, something that users and patrons really want to come to and be a part of,” said Danny McGinnis, a senior design associate for SH Architecture.
About half the $2.2 million project is funded by a federal community block grant that will pay for a new elevator, flooring, air conditioners and designs drawn up by SH Architecture. City officials seek additional grants and sponsors to cover the remaining costs to convert the Canyon Electric Building into a library.
The project is part of an effort to redevelop downtown North Las Vegas into a pedestrian-friendly urban core known as Lake Mead Village West, a 160-acre area roughly bordered by Interstate 15, Las Vegas Boulevard, Tonopah Avenue and Judson Avenue.
City officials have spent more than a year developing ideas under a $75,000 consulting contract with Bunnyfish Studio, the architect that helped spearhead redevelopment in downtown Las Vegas.
Additional improvements under consideration include restaurants, shops, a museum and possibly a transit station along Lake Mead Boulevard.
“Some of the other redevelopment projects we’re working on will have a ripple effect on the rest of the area,” Gavan said.