Berryessa Branch Library

Located in San Jose, the Berryessa Branch Library, which opened in 2005, was the first library expansion project completed under the Branch Library Development Program. The goal was to provide a new, larger library was facility planned to allow better service to youth and provide space for more diverse collections to meet the needs of an evolving Berryessa community. The library provides educational resources and recreational opportunities serving the needs and interests of the local community, featuring one of the largest Chinese language branch collections.


Community Building


San Jose Public Library

Designed by Group 4 Architecture Research + Planning, the 20,000sf library facility showcases a central “marketplace” that features retail-style merchandising and an Internet cafe. Distinct children’s and teen environments are provided, including a flexible “stage” space just as easily occupied by a mother and child as by a capacity attendance of story time. Group study space, a comfortable adult reading lounge, and a quiet room accommodate all levels of study sought by library patrons. All public areas of the library are visible from two staff service desks, and patron self-service opportunities are maximized in order to free staff to provide service to customers.

Generous, light-filled spaces and strategically-placed picture windows further connect the library interior to its setting within a park. Varied roof heights form a skyline that reduces the bulk of the building in respect to the scale of the park and the surrounding single-family residential neighborhood. A raised floor permits flexibility of power and data supply as well as for efficient air distribution. The building also showcases works of art, including original paintings and sculptures as well as pieces transferred from the former facility.


Group 4 Architecture Research + Planning


Group 4 Architecture, Research + Planning is a full-service architecture firm of talented professionals inspired to create vibrant, enduring places that cultivate dynamic communities.