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Building a Piece of Art for the City of Austin

The City of Austin’s new Central Library is a nine-story, 198,000-s.f. new building that is now Austin’s largest-ever public library—double the size of the old library. According to general contractor Hensel Phelps, “The iconic building is defined by a daylight-filled, six-story atrium wrapped by collections and event space.” Library features include: a bridge connecting the library to 2nd Street over Shoal Creek, an underground parking garage, a restaurant and special event center that can hold more than 300 people, an outdoor café, and an art gallery.

Bergelectric was responsible for all aspects of the electrical installation including fire alarm, tel-data, security, CCTV, access control, lightning protection, and paging systems. Bergelectric also provided an empty raceway for the audio/visual system and block-outs for the roof mounted photovoltaic system.

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The New City of Austin Central Library features include:

• Book collections displayed to encourage discovery
• Automated laptop kiosks
• Interactive art displays including virtual reality
• Two reading porches and an indoor reading room
• Views of Shoal Creek and Lady Bird Lake
• A bridge connecting the library to 2nd St. over Shoal Creek
• Landmark public gathering atrium space adjacent to Shoal Creek
• Cook Book Café with outdoor dining adjacent to Second St. and Shoal Creek Park
• Recycled Reads Gift Shop
• Gallery space featuring local and national artists
• Event center that can hold more than 300 people
• Parking garage with 200 spaces
• Bike corral for 200 bicycles

Bergelectric teamed with general contractor Hensel Phelps as the electrical contractor to help make this state-of-the-art library come to life for the City of Austin. Through the use of modern construction technology, the ability work seamlessly with other construction trades, and acute attention to quality control and safety, Bergelectric proved to be a crucial contractor in the project’s overall success.

198,000  Square Feet

Electrical Construction Cost
$15.7 Million

February 2014 – October 2017

Delivery Method
Design Bid Build

Other Team Members
Hensel Phelps
City of Austin

Berg Regional Office




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