Overlooking the Contoocook River, the Peterborough Library is the world’s oldest tax-supported public Library. Its central location in the town confirms its importance as a resource and a gathering place for the entire community.
ABA’s project renews and renovates the 1893 building, and adds 12,500 sf for collections, programs, and the arts. In its balanced design, the new addition responds to the original structure, with a broad connector accommodating for children and young adult libraries, general collections, and maker spaces. The new community meeting wing is balanced with the original structure in a simple traditional brick and stone mass, articulated with a contemporary masonry and glass façade. Historic finishes in the 1893 building will be renewed, and the large flexible multi-purpose room provides a new civic forum with views to the town, river, and Monadnock landscape. New outdoor spaces – gardens, river terrace, and a long open reading porch – connect the Library with the town, offering new settings for community gatherings. This expansion and revitalization dramatically expands Peterborough’s reach, programs, and services, while preserving its history and intimacy.
Peterborough, New Hampshire