Central Library

240,000 sq ft of functional, flexible, beautifully designed space

“One of the world’s most futuristic libraries” opened to Calgarians in 2018.


$245-million civic amenity garners worldwide awards and attention

In 2018, after a complex and intensive five-year construction program, we completed the Central Library that now adorns East Village. CMLC contributed $70 million from our CRL to this vital city-building project. Taking shape over approximately 1.7 million construction hours, this urban landmark and world-class institution has garnered dozens of awards for architecture and placemaking.


Key Takeaways

  • 1

    An award-winning civic gathering place

    One of NY Times 52 Best Places to Go in 2019, the library forges a vital connection between downtown and East Village

  • 2

    Home to a half million books… and so much more

    Amid a collection of 450,000 books are 30 free community meeting areas, a children’s library, recording studios and a performance hall

  • 3

    An innovative use for an “unusable” site

    Built above an active LRT line that curves across the site, the Central Library is a showcase of design ingenuity and engineering magic

Media & Recognition

Architectural Digest
Architectural Digest

Named as one of Canada’s most anticipated projects of 2018

American Institute of Architects
American Institute of Architects

AIA/ALA Library Building Award 2019

SEGD Global Design Awards
SEGD Global Design Awards

Merit Award for Wayfinding 2019

Mayor’s Urban Design Award
Mayor’s Urban Design Award

People's Choice Award and The Mawson Urban Design Award 2019

Mayor’s Urban Design Award
Mayor’s Urban Design Award

Great City Great Design 2017



Broke ground May 2014Completed November 2018


  • Calgary Public Library
    Calgary Public Library
  • The City of Calgary
    The City of Calgary

Project Team7

  • Dialog
    Prime Design Consultant & Mechanical
  • Snøhetta
    Prime Design Consultant & Landscape Architect
  • Stuart Olson
    Stuart Olson
    Construction Manager
  • Colliers Project Leaders
    Colliers Project Leaders
    Project Manager
  • Entuitive
    Structural Engineer
  • SMP Engineering
    SMP Engineering
    Electrical Engineer
  • Parsons
    Civil Engineer


  • CMLC Year in Review

  • Central Library LEED® Gold Designation

  • CMLC Prepares to Hand Over the Keys to Calgary's New Central Library

  • New Central Library Public Art Installation Underway

  • CMLC Announces Artist for New Central Library's Public Art Program

  • Calgary's New Central Library Takes Two More Steps Toward Completion

  • New Central Library Is Now Weather-Tight

  • Another Major Milestone Reached at New Central Library Site

  • New Central Library Curtain Wall Installation Begins

  • East Village Outlook 2016

  • Vertical Construction of the New Central Library Now Under Way

  • East Village 2015 Outlook

  • Search Narrows for New Central Library