History of the Library
In 1979, a group of concerned Cedar Park citizens brought a proposition before the Mayor and City Council advocating for a local library. The City Council approved the first yearly budget for the library, and dedicated volunteers worked diligently to establish the Cedar Park Public Library.
In December of 1980, the city hired Pauline Lam to serve as the Library Director. The Library officially opened on January 17, 1981 in a small facility in Cedar Park Plaza. The Library was moved to a remodeled laundromat a year later. Through the support of the community and the City of Cedar Park, the Library completed construction on a new 7,000 square foot building at 550 Discovery Boulevard in September of 1990. In order to continue to meet the needs of the Cedar Park area, the library expanded its facility to 25,000 square feet in 2001 through a bond passed by the citizens of Cedar Park and the fund raising efforts of the Library Foundation. In 2015, the founding Library Director Pauline Lam retired and Julia Mitschke became the Library Director.
Throughout the 40-year history, the library has received close to a million dollars from various grants. Among the grants that were either one time or aggregates of over $10,000 were those from:
- HEB Grocery Store
- Lakeline Development Company
- Library Services and Construction Act Title II Grant from the Texas State Library and Archives Commission
- Time Warner Cable
- The Tocker Foundation
- Telecommunication Infrastructure Fund
- The Dell Foundation's Literate Community Grant
- Impact Grants from the Texas State Library and Archives Commission
The Future of the Library
In the November 2015 voters approved bond funding for a new library. These bonds will provide funding for construction, renovation or other costs relating to the Public Library. This may include additional program space, classrooms and conference rooms, quiet spaces, new technology, capacity for more materials and an increased parking capacity.
Plans have since evolved to include the new library in the Bell District, as part of the Bell Redevelopment Project. The Library will serve as an anchor for the District, which will feature approximately 16 acres of greenspace that includes a creek and dozens of large, majestic trees. The new library will be nestled among the trees and bordering the park. This beautiful setting creates unique design opportunities for the new library to create a gathering place unlike any other in the region.
In late 2020, City Council chose Lake | Flato Architects, Inc. to design the new library. The new library to be built in the Bell District is slated for construction in early 2023 and opening in mid-2024.
The first library building, a 500 square feet store front in the Cedar Park Plaza (1980 to 1981).
The second library building, a 1,500 square feet remodeled laundromat, at 120 Commercial Parkway (1981 to 1990).
The original 7,300 square feet permanent building at 550 Discovery Boulevard (1990 to 2000).
Expanded 25,500 square feet library building at 550 Discovery Boulevard (2001 to present).