New Central Library Opens Its Doors

December 5, 2017 by Kate Harrington

After four years of construction, Austin’s new Central Library at 710 Cesar Chavez Street opened its doors to the public on Oct. 28.

The 200,000 square-foot library replaces the former Faulk Library on Guadalupe, and offers a community-oriented space that goes beyond books.

Books there are, however – more than 350,000 of them with room to add more. That’s more than the 300,000 available at Faulk (this library is also double the size of the Faulk library.)

The six-story library also features a rooftop garden, community and event space, a café, cooking demonstration space, dedicated teen and children spaces, reading porches, and lots of seating and meeting space. There’s also a “tech petting zoo” that lets library users try out gadgets like virtual reality goggles and a 3D printer.

The café, which is set to open in early 2018, is being run by Elm Restaurant Group, which also operates Easy Tiger and 24 Diner.

There is parking for cars, and a planned bike valet, with room for up to 200 bicycles.

The library came in at $125 million, an increase from the original $90 million that voters approved in 2006.

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Written by Kate Harrington

Kate is a former reporter, most recently for the Austin Business Journal, where she covered real estate, economic development and transportation. Since 2010 she has been running Thumbtack Communications. Thumbtack provides writing, editing and marketing services. Before moving to Austin in 2002 Kate lived in her native New England, which she still visits often to escape the Texas heat.