|Photograph property of Browning Day Mullins Dierdorf Architects|
Case Study: Lincoln Heritage Public Library Chrisney Branch
By Daniel J. Overbey, AIA; and William M. Brown, AIA
For the people of Chrisney, Ind., opportunity for social and economic investment has not been knocking. This community of fewer than 500 has been in a gradual economic decline over the past several decades. Having already lost its high school in the 1970s due to a push for school consolidation, the town took another blow in 2011 when an expansion of U.S. 231 rerouted the four-lane corridor around the town, which was once a thriving rural community in southern Indiana.
Located 15 miles from the nearest public library, the community saw its children slipping on reading scores because they lacked access to the library district’s summer reading programs. Gradually, families were moving away from Chrisney, their children never to return. The town realized it needed a library — a new source of pride and a center for community. What it ended up with was a net zero energy library.