Salt Lake City Public Library

Honor Award

The building's architecture was designed to make the most of the stunning natural environment with walls of glass providing views of the nearby Wasatch Mountains and a rooftop garden providing 360-degree views of the Salt Lake Valley.

The signage uses materials like water-cut stainless steel, frosted glass, and vinyl letters on glass to play with transparency, and the design is driven by language. The typographic treatment locates words within a larger context – like a single word in a text, or finding information in the library. The cut-off type also suggests something growing or just coming up over the horizon.

Directional signage in the stacks uses a template for the Dewey Decimal System used to organize books. Librarians can easily print new inserts themselves, should they need to update the numbers of shelving locations.

Jury Comments: 

"This signage and graphics system is perfectly integrated with the library's architecture. The logo/signature is a stylized representation of stacks, strongly upholding the notion that in this age of easy access to electronic information, the book is still the iconic source and still what a library is about. The typography is simple and the graphic designer's skill is in their orchestration of using type as texture, especially in identification where a sense of transparency is created by cutting off the type and puncturing the surface with elements marching around the edges. The free-standing directory is especially noteworthy, working with a playful grid of alternating squares and color-coding elements that indicate location."

Design Firm: 

Pentagram

Client: 

Salt Lake City Public Library System

Location City: 

Salt Lake City, Utah

Project Area: 

N/A

Open Date: 

N/A

Project Budget: 

N/A

Photo Credits: 

Peter Mauss/Esto

Design Team: 

Michael Gericke (Principal in Charge), Lior Vaturi, Elizabeth Meiers, Wayne McCutcheon/Entro Communications Associate Designers Entro Communications, Toronto, Canada; Wayne McCutcheon; Raymond Cheung

Consultants: 

Wayne McCutcheon/Entro Communications

Fabricators: 

Cornelius

Relevant Links: 

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