Connetquot Public Library Learning Commons

Over the Summer of 2019, the Connetquot Public Library in Bohemia, NY, began an ambitious renovation project designed to transform existing multi-tiered bookstack area into a 2,000 square-foot Learning Commons. As the landscape of public libraries continues to evolve, it has become paramount for the Library to establish a physical space to showcase the direction in which the Library is transitioning. Rather than creating either a traditional teen or makerspace, BBS interior design team proposed a dynamic, flexible area where the concept of a learning commons, often found in academic libraries, morphs and adapts to a public library setting. The space was designed to provide Library patrons with a glimpse of the vibrant future for public libraries, where a high-quality education is made available through content creation technology, gaming, virtual reality, as well as traditional learning.

The Connetquot Learning Commons was designed to meet three modern goals for library service: (1) to provide a central location for all of the Library’s makerspace equipment, including 3-D printers, green screen, die cutting, and sewing machines; (2) to offer a vibrant and functional area for teens/young adults to study, collaborate, and socialize; and finally, (3) to provide the versatility needed to accommodate meetings or public classes.

While many of the seating solutions and equipment are meant to appeal to teens and young adults, the Learning Commons is actually designed for anyone who wants to learn and innovate. New and exciting curriculum was developed by the Library staff to complement the new spaces, including coding/hardware classes, and 3-D modeling/printing, in addition to other popular teen classes.

Some of the equipment and FFE solutions available at the Learning Commons include work tables with attached seating; collaboration & multi-player tables; information desk; green screen studio; mobile book shelving; immersive Virtual Reality Zone; Apple iMacs and gaming PCs; “Cricut” die cutting machines; and other items.