The City of Sacramento plans to renovate the Martin Luther King, Jr. Library in 2025 to better meet the needs of the community. The City will conduct a series of outreach events early in 2024 to better understand the community’s needs.
Share your ideas and help create the vision of the Martin Luther King, Jr. Library
We need your input to create a design that suits our community. Drop by the pop-up kiosk, attend the community meeting or take our online survey to share your thoughts.
Take our online survey through March 15.
Thank you to all who shared their input on spaces, activities, and building design preferences in our first phase in January 2024. This information helps us design a library for the whole community. This second phase of community engagement focuses on gathering input on interior design themes and sustainable design strategies. The design team will use this input to further develop the vision for the Martin Luther King, Jr. Library.
During the mid-1960s, the growing communities in the southern part of Sacramento County needed a large library for reference and resource services. At the time, only smaller locations served the area: Southgate Library, Belle Cooledge Library, and bookmobile. The City of Sacramento acquired the property on the southwest corner of the 24th Street Bypass for a new regional library. At 15,000 square feet, the library would be 3 times larger than most locations. The branch was designed to provide students with more reference and research materials than the other locations.
On the evening of April 4, 1968, Sacramento City Council voted to name the location the Martin Luther King, Jr. Library just hours after Dr. King was assassinated. The library, opened to the public on May 18, 1970 and is said to be the first structure to be named after the civil rights leader. The building featured a wood sculpture called “The Offering” by artist Georgianna Else, which was dedicated to the memory of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
A black granite sculpture entitled “Africa Emerging” by Meade B. Kibbey was installed at the entrance of the building in 1974. The sculpture standing nearly five feet tall and weighing approximately 5,000 pounds was designed to express African endurance and the ability to overcome oppression. It portrays a clenched fist and forearm emerging from a broken shackle.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
What is the timeline for the renovation?
The City will conduct a series of outreach events early in 2024 to better understand the community’s needs. Design plans will be developed later in the year. Construction is expected to start in 2025. The library is expected to reopen to the public early 2026.
How will the Martin Luther King, Jr. Library be funded?
This project will be funded by $5.5 million Building Forward Infrastructure grant from the California State Library.