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Renovations to Enoch Pratt Library in Full Swing

Secretary Churchill (left) talks to John Durcan, Gilbane Project Manager, on the library’s roof about the work being done to completely renovate the historic building.

The reading room runs nearly the length of the library. Original art along the walls will be restored.

Enoch Pratt Free Library

Secretary Churchill and members of his staff received a tour of the iconic Enoch Pratt Library from John Durcan, Gilbane Construction project manager, on Tuesday, February 28. The top to bottom tour illustrated the huge undertaking, overseen by DGS, to renovate this historic Baltimore City gem.

Constructed in the 1930s, the Enoch Pratt Library is a fine example of neo-classical design and is well known for both its architectural beauty and elaborate original decorative interior finishes. It has had two additions in the last 30 years but has never undergone a comprehensive renovation restoration and restoration.

DGS is managing the work at the 300,000 sq. ft., four-story library, which includes all building systems and restoration and conservation of original artwork and decorative finishes. With a construction budget of $86.5M, the DGS design team moved forward in 2015 to develop drawings. Gilbane Construction was selected to provide construction management services for the duration of the project. Minority Business Enterprise participation is 35% and veteran business participation is 5%, representing economic development and jobs.

Construction began in June 2016 and will be completed in May 2019. The library will remain open during the interior-wide renovations.

Secretary Churchill and DGS staff are standing on scaffolding that runs the length and width of the atrium. The ceiling, just  a few feet above them, will be restored.



The unique character of the library will be maintained. Original interior and exterior materials are being cleaned, restored and preserved, and significant artwork is being identified. Renovations will incorporate current trends in library services and technology for enhanced customer use in an environment that will accommodate a diverse public.

It’s exciting to be part of a project that preserves history while giving it a much-needed 21st century facelift,” said Lauren Buckler, Assistant Secretary of Facilities Planning, Design and Construction, whose office is overseeing the project. “It will improve the quality of life for visitors and the City of Baltimore alike.”