The Boston Public Library’s Welcome Center is the anchor to the newly renovated Johnson Building. It pulls people in from the street and sends them on a journey of discovery throughout the library. It is located right at the entrance of the Johnson Building, and is managed by a staff member who can assist visitors as they enter by answering their questions. It’s unique nautilus shape is built in three sections and consists of ten large curved screens and twenty-eight unique square displays all in an illuminated, custom fabricated stainless steel housing.
Through these displays, visitors to the library can find out about upcoming programs, see the invisible lives of books, take a shelf portrait, learn about their community, explore tweets, collections, and so much more. Emblazoned with the motto FREE TO ALL, the Welcome Center is a reflection of a dynamic library and the city that built it.
In addition to the Welcome Center itself, Small Design Firm developed a content management system that serves all of the parts of the Welcome Center. Library staff use a web-based interface to manage the modules in the Welcome Center. From there, they can do things like upload content for promoted programs, delete Shelf Portraits or video suggestions, or modify the parameters of the social media feed.