The award-winning Missoula Public Library is already receiving recognition for its amazing design, being named the "Public Library of the Year" in 2022.

That award from the International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions effectively named the new library, which opened in 2021 as the best library in the world.

Last spring, the Missoula Library won more accolades when it was one of five libraries to be awarded the AIA/ALA Library Building Award from the American Library Association, acknowledging the building's unique design, but also the inclusion of special educational spaces, like SpectrUM, the Families First Learning Lab, and MCAT.

Now, the library is nominated for some features you can't see.

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A state-of-the-art design

As the Missoula Public Library took shape before its construction, special attention was paid to not only the design but how the building would operate. Coming from the old library, where critical infrastructure systems were failing, library leaders and their contractors, A&E Design, wanted to take advantage of the opportunity to make the new library energy-efficient. That resulted in a building that's loaded with operational design features, from lighting to heating and cooling which most library users aren't even aware of.

Dennis Bragg photo
Dennis Bragg photo

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Recognition for "green"

Now, the International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions is including the Missoula Library on the "long list" of candidates for this year's IFLA Green Library Award 2024 Grand Scale Project Category. And it's the only library from the Americas to be included in the global competition. The others are in China, Croatia, Germany, Portugal, Spain and Sri Lanka.

Finalists will be named next month.

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Gallery Credit: Stephanie Gull

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