Howard County officials have unveiled renderings for a planned library and affordable housing project on Lake Kittamaqundi in Columbia, Maryland, though construction is still several years away.
The 100,000-square-foot building will be what Howard County calls the first, innovative library of its kind in the region.
It is designed by internationally known architectural firm Heatherwick Studio, whose high-profile projects include the landmark Vessel public art structure in New York City’s Hudson Yards.
“The Lakefront Library project is for the people and will serve as a transformative civic and educational center for all in Howard County,” said Howard County Executive Calvin Ball, at last week’s unveiling of the project.
“It will be a hub where education, the arts, and nature all converge to spare creativity, critical thinking, and community connections.”
The project is not yet funded, but is included in Ball’s proposed fiscal year 2024 capital budget, submitted to the Howard County Council this week. Initial work for the project, if approved, will begin later this year, with a groundbreaking by 2026.
The library would be built on land provided by The Howard Hughes Corp., the real estate company that developed Downtown Columbia and continues to expand it with other projects in the Merriweather District, including $325 million in phased development that will include a medical facility, more housing and retail.
The Merriweather District has already grown to 5 million square feet of residential, retail and restaurants.
The lakefront library project will also include at least 240 mixed-income residential units.
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