IIDA and ALA Honor North York Central Library with Best of Competition Award

For more information, please contact:
Andrea Chin, Communications Director
Email: press@dsai.ca

June 27, 2022

IIDA and the American Library Association (ALA) honoured Diamond Schmitt as the Best of Competition winner of the 2022 ALA/IIDA Library Design Awards for the  North York Central Library interior renovation.  

This biennial competition honors excellence in library interior design and promotes examples of extraordinary design reflected through innovative concepts. The firm was chosen from nine category winners and was announced and honored as the Best of Competition during a special winners’ celebration on June 26th at the Annual ALA Annual Conference in Washington D.C. 

“As a winner in the Outstanding Historic Renovation Project category, the interior renovation of the North York Central Library showcases the beauty to be found when fusing an existing space with a bright, new future,” said IIDA Executive Vice President and CEO, Cheryl S. Durst, Hon. FIIDA. “Highlighting the impressive features through updated interior architecture, Diamond Schmitt expertly maintained the legacy of a beloved space while also tapping into its endless potential.” 

Entries were reviewed by a committee of interior design and library professionals: Garvey Library Consulting Founder and Principal, Toni Garvey, IIDA; Collins Cooper Carusi Architects Principal, Fiona Grandowski, IIDA, AIA; and Hollis + Miller Architects Associate Interior Designer, Hillary L'Ecuyer, IIDA. 

Located in North York, Toronto, Ontario, the 168,000 square-foot North York Central Library renovation included expansive updates to the library’s seven-story structure. As an integral part of the North York community, the library features large, multidisciplinary workspaces, natural light, and cutting-edge library science technology. 

“The North York Central Library truly reimagines what one can expect from a visit to the library,” said Garvey on behalf of the jury. “Not only does the space feature a variety of functional necessities and convenient amenities for patrons and visitors, but it also serves as a beautiful addition to the North York community.” 

Diamond Schmitt’s renovation of the North York Central Library came out ahead of international projects including the Stavros Niarchos Foundation Library (SNFL) by Mecanoo, in collaboration with Beyer Blinder Belle; the Western Reserve Historical Society Research Library Renovation by AECOM; Francis A. Countway Library of Medicine Renovations, Harvard Medical School by Sheply Bulfinch; Waterway Library by Design Action; and The Hive by Integrus Architecture, to capture the Best of Competition Award. 

IIDA is the commercial interior design association with global reach. We support design professionals, industry affiliates, educators, students, firms, and their clients through our network of 15,000+ members across 58 countries. We advocate for advancements in education, design excellence, legislation, leadership, accreditation, and community outreach to increase the value and understanding of interior design as a profession that enhances business value and positively impacts the health and well- being of people’s lives every day. 

The American Library Association (ALA) is the oldest and largest library association in the world, providing association information, news, events, and advocacy resources for members, librarians, and library users. Founded on October 6, 1876, during the Centennial Exposition in Philadelphia, the mission of ALA is to provide leadership for the development, promotion, and improvement of library and information services, and the profession of librarianship in order to enhance learning and ensure access to information for all. 

Read the full IIDA press release here.