Erna Fergusson Library is composed of three types of volumes: a low rectangular box; high, half-arched volumes, and a tower. Each of these shapes has a different form and function. The low, rectangular box at the entry preserves columns, beams, and the roof deck of a previous building. The reuse of these components allowed the construction budget to afford more space in the new library.
The two high, half-arched volumes provide gracious reading space for patrons, and a spatial contrast to the lower volume. One of the curved-roof volumes houses stacks and computer stations. The other houses the children’s area, connected to a patio for outdoor activities. The tower calls attention to the library on one of the busiest streets in Albuquerque.
Controlled, natural light was a major consideration. The entry volume has floor-to-ceiling glass on the east side to let visitors see in, and to provide a view of the Sandia Mountains. The mesh on the porch ceiling moderates the east sun. To provide natural light deeper into the rectangular box, three triangular light monitors allow direct sun only on winter mornings. The east facing glass in the arched volumes is low-emissivity glass. The shaded, recessed windows on the west wall control the west, afternoon sun. They also control the traffic noise from San Mateo Boulevard.
Architect: Cherry/See Architects
Contractor: Newt & Butch’s Roofing and Sheet Metal, Inc
American Institute of Architects, Albuquerque, Merit Award (2005)
“Alphabet Soup”, by Pete Beeman https://www.cabq.gov/culturalservices/public-art/public-art-in-albuquerque/interactive-public-art-map