The UCLA William Andrews Clark Memorial Library received the 2019 Conservancy Preservation Award from the Los Angeles Conservancy. The organization, which works to preserve and revitalize historic architectural and cultural resources, recognized the library for its major renovation that began in 2015.
The library, built in 1926 and designated a historical monument in 1964, posed a major safety issue due to its dated infrastructure, as visitors were required to enter through narrow stairs made out of travertine, a type of limestone susceptible to damage if left unpolished or unsealed. The building also did not have proper access for people with physical disabilities and lacked seismic reinforcement.
The library’s project team seismically retrofitted the building and restored and cleaned original elements such as the buildings painted ceilings. To make it more accessible, the team constructed a new entry pavilion with interior stairs and an elevator. The renovation kept the library’s original appearance intact and even utilized bricks that were sourced from clay mines that supplied bricks for the library’s construction nearly a century ago.