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  • About

Main Library Project

    In order to better serve Carmel's growing community, the Carmel Clay Public Library is expanding and renovating the Main Library at 425 E Main Street. The Grand Reopening Celebration will be held on Saturday, October 1.

    Learn more about the project and see how it's coming along.


    The New "LIBRARY" Sign

    Main Library sign


    A Sneak Peek

    • Aug2022 lobby ceiling
    • Aug2022 grand staircase
    • Aug2022 moving into Kids Area
    • Aug2022 moving into Teens Area
    • Aug2022 limestone sign


    Reopening Timeline

    We have exciting details about our move back to the Main Library and our Grand Reopening Celebration. Click here to learn more.


    New Light Fixtures Installed

    • Main lights YS
    • Main lights AS
    • Main light Reading Room
    • Main light Teens


    Teen Muralist Selected

    We’re thrilled to announce that Connor Heagy is the winner of our Teen Mural Contest. Connor’s artwork will be featured on a large mural at the expanded Main Library when it reopens this fall. The mural will be located above study rooms and program space in the library’s new first-floor Teens Area.


    Color and Light

    As construction continues at the Main Library ahead of reopening in the fall, color and light have entered the spaces. Tile adorns the columns in the Teens Area and on the circular desk in the Kids Area. Our bright yellow Discovery Room will host storytimes and other children's programs, while new Meeting Rooms on the 2nd floor are being created for adult programs and meetings. The Reading Room in the northwest corner of the building looks out over the intersection of Main Street and Richland Avenue. The connecting skybridge between the library and the parking garage is also taking shape.

    • Main Mar2022 KidsArea
    • Main Mar2022 DiscoveryRoom
    • Main Mar2022 TeensArea
    • Main Mar2022 MeetingRooms
    • Main Mar2022 NorthwestView
    • Main Mar2022 NorthwestCorner
    • Main Mar2022 GarageSkybridge


    Lobby Construction Progress

    • Main Jan2022 Lobby1
    • Main Jan2022 Lobby2
    • Main Jan2022 Lobby3
    • Main Jan2022 FrontStairs


    A Bird's-Eye View

    This combination of drone footage and architectural renderings shows where different spaces will be located in the expanded Main Library.


    Carmel-Based Java House Selected for Library Café

    The library is pleased to announce that Java House will provide café service at the expanded Main Library when it reopens in 2022. The Carmel-based company will operate the library's 1,100-square-foot café space, serving their signature cold-brew coffee drinks as well as tea, hot chocolate, and snacks.

    "Beginning last summer, we solicited proposals from businesses who were interested in operating the café at the library," said Library Director Bob Swanay. "Our goal is to give Carmel residents and visitors the best library experience possible, so we are excited to announce our partnership with such an outstanding local business as Java House. Patrons and visitors will enjoy a great menu of beverages and select food items and a variety of seating both inside and outside the new space."

    Founded in 2018 as a retail coffee brand, Java House opened its first coffee bar at Clay Terrace in 2019, followed by locations in Midtown Carmel and Broad Ripple. The company plans to expand to additional locations in the greater Indianapolis area.

    • Main Library Exterior
    • First Level Atrium
    • First Level Atrium
    • DML
    • Community Room
    • Main Library YA
    • Second Level Atrium
    • Main Library Site Layout
    • Main Library Site Plan

    About the Main Library Project

    In order to better serve Carmel's growing community, the Carmel Clay Public Library is expanding and renovating the Main Library. While this two-year construction project is underway, Main Library service has been relocated to the Merchants' Square shopping center at 2140 E. 116th Street.

    Since the Main Library building opened its doors in 1999, the library's service population has doubled. In 2019, annual library checkouts reached nearly 2.2 million, and over 600,000 people visited library locations.

    Features that patrons will enjoy when the project is complete include: 

    - Greater program capacity, including a dividable 300-person room and additional rooms for programs & events
    - New parking garage and covered bridge to library
    - Digital Media Lab within the library instead of in offsite leased space
    - Greatly expanded area for teens
    - Outdoor space for the public to enjoy and for library events

    The Main Library project is the result of nearly three years of planning. Design and construction are taking place in partnership with RATIO Architects (Architect), Skillman Corporation (Construction Manager), and the Veridus Group (Owner's Representative).

    Main Library Project Goals

    - Increase capacity for events and programs
    - Increase parking to accommodate larger events and a growing facility
    - Increase the Young Adult space to create more engagement opportunities and expand services for teens
    - Improve and update the Youth Services Department
    - Increase seating and meeting space for study and tutoring
    - Improve access to new and existing technologies
    - Shape outdoor spaces for additional program opportunities
    - Extend the architectural presence of the Arts & Design District
    - Be environmentally responsible and reduce building energy use