Posted: January 5, 2017
The courtyard at the John M Harper Branch

On January 27, 2017, Chatelaine Magazine revealed its list of "The 15 Coolest Libraries in Canada". Chatelaine writer, Matthew Hague, said of the selected libraries, "From the traditional to the avant-garde, book-lending buildings showcase some of the country’s most spectacular architecture."

Waterloo Public Library is excited to announce that our John M. Harper Branch, which opened in October 2011, made the list.

A few facts about the John M. Harper Branch

  • Teeple Architects Inc. and Garwood-Jones & Hanham Architects designed the John M. Harper Branch
  • the building received LEED silver status for incorporating energy efficient elements in its design, construction, and ongoing maintenance
  • the 21,000 sq ft Harper Branch, which shares the site with the Stork Family Y, opened at 500 Fischer-Hallman Road North on Oct 22, 2011
  • 100,000 news books, DVDs and CDs filled the shelves on opening day, 3000 of which were borrowed by excited customers within the first 3 hours of business
  • there are not only many areas to sit and relax inside the library, but there is also an outdoor landscaped courtyard with cafe tables and chairs
  • like the Main Library and the McCormick Branch, Harper features traditional, much-loved library collections combined with technology-based services and programs for all ages
  • the Origami Goose scultpure was created by artist/architect and U of W student, Jyhling Lee
  • John "Jack" M. Harper was a local lawyer, formerly a Company Commander with the Argyll & Sutherland Highlanders. He was a busy volunteer in our community and was once named "Kitchener-Waterloo Citizen of the Year". 

To view the Chatelaine feature on the Coolest Libraries, click here.

To view our online album of the construction of the John M. Harper Branch, click here.