What a special thing when a local library reopens! The Branciforte Branch library, located on Gault Street, was closed for renovations in May of 2021. Exactly two years later, the Santa Cruz Public Libraries (SCPL) is excited to welcome back the community to this neighborhood branch.
Designed by Jayson Architects, this 6,800 square foot renovation includes a new community room, a dedicated teen-only space, significant electrical and accessibility upgrades, and the Allison Endert Memorial Children’s room and outdoor patio.
Our design is largely one of removal and refinement: removing walls to open up space and let in daylight, hiding unsightly exposed wiring, and emphasizing the grand scale with lighting.
— Abe Jayson, Principal & Founder of Jayson Architects
In 2016, the Santa Cruz community approved Measure S, which provided funding to upgrade, renovate, and/or rebuild the 10 library branch facilities located across Santa Cruz County. As a result of this community investment, the library spaces have been re-imagine to meet the needs of modern library users. “We approached this project with a great sense of appreciation for the architecture of the original building, including the honesty and elegance of the exposed wood and concrete structure,” said Abe Jayson, Principal & Founder of Jayson Architects.
Including Branciforte, 8 branch projects have been completed so far. From critical infrastructure upgrades and improved technological capacities to new kids rooms and community programming spaces, the new library branches are not only beautiful but highly functional. On any given week, SCPL sees over 12,000 visitors and hosts 70+ programs and events for kids, teens, and adults.
“SCPL brings people, information, and resources together to enrich lives and strengthen our community. At any of our branch libraries, patrons will find safe, friendly, well-equipped spaces with resources, programs, and services relevant to all community members”, said Yolande Wilburn, Library Director.
Included in this branch is the Allison Endert Memorial Children’s Room. Allison is known to many community members for her years in public service, her dedication to Gault Elementary, and her kind spirit. After Allison’s passing in 2020, the community came together to raise funds to name the children’s room at the Branciforte Branch Library in her honor as a fitting and lasting tribute to a woman who gave Santa Cruz and her Seabright community so much.
The Branciforte Branch will be open 6 days a week, Monday through Thursday 10am to 6pm, and Friday and Saturday from 10am to 5pm. Follow the library on social media @SantaCruzPL or visit SantaCruzPL.org for more information and a full calendar of events.
It takes a village to pull off a project like this. A big thank you to the Friends of the Santa Cruz Public Library, all of the project donors, the City of Santa Cruz, SCPL Staff, and the entire community for their continued support of this important project!