“The community really deserves this new branch, which is twice as big with more space to collaborate, learn, entertain and serve the neighborhood.”
Equitable design results in community pride.
KAI's programming and conceptual design process involved meeting with key stakeholders, the local elected official and residents. The resulting initial design included a curved floor-to-ceiling glass wall running the length of the library circulation area looking out onto a well-landscaped natural area. During the course of design, designers repeatedly heard that the building would be vandalized, or bullets would shatter this expanse of glass. But KAI's philosophy of equitable design regardless of the economic composition of the surrounding community was persuasive, and the glass wall remained. Despite initial concerns, the library hasn’t experienced any vandalism or broken windows. The Highland Hills Branch Library has been deeply embraced by the community, and other library systems have looked to the facility for inspiration and best practices. It is the crown jewel in the Dallas Library system, recognized regionally as one of the best branches in the city. Highland Hills has hosted political debates, lectures, community organizations, dramatic performances and even musical events, creating transformational neighborhood pride with patrons and the community.