edited by Sheila Kim -- Interior Design, 2/1/2004 12:00:00 AM
Moshe Safdie began his celebrated architectural career in 1960's Philadelphia, apprenticing under Louis Kahn. Some 40 years later, Safdie, now principal and founder of Moshe Safdie and Associates in Somerville, Massachusetts, is giving back to the City of Brotherly Love with his plans for renovating and expanding the Central Library. Chosen above 39 other applicants by the Free Library of Philadelphia's selection committee, Safdie—who previously designed libraries in Salt Lake City and Vancouver, British Columbia—will partner with Francis Cauffman Foley Hoffman in Philadelphia.
The $120 million project will make the beaux arts 1927 library handicapped-accessible and also include an 180,000-square-foot new building to the north; an atrium will connect the two structures. A public-private partnership is funding the work, due to be complete in five to six years.