400 East Court Avenue | Suite 140 | Des Moines, IA 50309

Des Moines Central Public Library

LocationDes Moines, IA
  • Project
    • $32 million
    • 140,500 Sq. Ft. (Including Garage)
  • Services
    •  Structural Design
    • Construction Review Services
    • Special Inspection Services 
  • Awards
    • Central States Region Award 

           American Institure of Architecture 


The new Des Moines Central Public Library will be a one-of-a-kind structure in the Metro area. Visitors will first notice its distinct angular shape and coloration, featuring a unique glazing system that incorporates a copper mesh screen sandwiched between panes of glass. This controls light intensity, energy costs, and provides a warm copper glow in the evening.

Once inside, one will observe a well coordinated floor plan, with great attention to detail and function, creating a space that is very user friendly. Some of the distinctive elements that make this new library a truly outstanding facility include:

  • Convenient on site parking in an underground garage.
  • Impressive structural two-way flat slab floor system, which does not require beams for support.
  • Striking exposed structural elements (stair framing, concrete columns, slab planes).
  • Efficient raised floor system allowing mechanical and electrical equipment to be hidden,
    yet readily accessible for easy connection, maintenance and upgrading in the future.
  • Roof slab designed to accommodate state-of-the-art future green roof loads (soil, grasses, native plants and flowers, drainage)--a first in Iowa.
  • Cutting edge information technologies integrated throughout the facility.
  • Park-like setting, with special blend of trees, plantings and lawns.

The project design team includes architects and engineers from Europe and Des Moines, giving the library an international flair. Upon completion, central Iowa’s newest, biggest and most unique library is sure to draw critical acclaim and be a key element in the development of Des Moines’ Gateway West.


>>Download a pdf of this project sheet