Library 21c is NOW OPEN!

Hours and Location

Project Overview

PPLD Facilities Officer Gary Syling discusses the next phase of our Tri-Building Project: East Library!

Learn more about Phase II here!

21st Century Library - What Is It?

The Tri-Building Project is the renovation of three PPLD facilities into 21st Century Libraries. The project will create more than 100,000 square feet of innovative new public library space that will optimize resources and minimize renovation costs, providing our community a truly competitive edge.

Library 21c: 70,000 square feet of innovative high tech library spaces such as Makerspaces, business and entrepreneurial center, conference rooms, media center, traditional library materials, and a 400 seat venue for conferences and performances.

East Library: Additional 17,500 square feet of public space and partial renovation to repurpose vacated space into study and meeting rooms, Makerspace, additional computers, and expansion of entry face.

Penrose Library: Additional 14,000 square feet of public space. Partial renovation to repurpose space into new Teen Center, improved Children’s Library with interactive garden, and entry expansion.


Projected cost is $13.2 M, 70% ($9.3M) of which is committed from District savings and capital improvement budgets. Including the $3.75 M purchase price of Library 21c located at 1175 Chapel Hills Drive.
Public funding will be leveraged by 30% or a $3.9 million capital campaign over 3 years. The El Pomar Foundation awarded a $750,000 challenge grant in January 2013 with $1.25 million additional donations received to date. Fundraising will continue under the leadership of the PPLD Foundation and will reach out to the funding community, area businesses, and individuals offering naming opportunities at suggested giving levels. Gifts can be pledged over three years and will count toward the El Pomar Challenge. The project will not incur debt and the expanded operations will be operated within current library budget projections.

In Summary:

Borrowing of materials at PPLD has increased roughly 50% in the last decade. In 2013, PPLD counted nearly 9 million items borrowed and 3.6 million patron visits. The expanding need for library service, an increasing population base, and the advent of new technologies require that PPLD grow in order to maintain the level of service our community expects, and more importantly, needs.
Preliminary planning for the Tri-Building Project drew on community needs as identified through a five-year planning process that focused on sustainable facilities and services. The project will serve 277,000 people residing in the areas surrounding Library 21c, and East and Penrose Libraries by 2016. It will reach families of all ages, income levels, and ethnicities.

About the Pikes Peak Library District:

PPLD is the second largest library district in Colorado. Established in 1903, PPLD serves the 620,000 residents in El Paso County providing 790 hours of library service a week across 2,090 square miles.
PPLD provides 15 facilities, online resources, mobile libraries, innovative technology, meeting spaces, and programs that foster a community of educated, informed and engaged citizens.
Program attendance topped 360,000 in 2013 with library meeting rooms used nearly 10,000 times by community groups. On average, PPLD checks out 24,800 items each day, with an annual circulation of 8.8 million. More than 3.5 million people walk into our libraries every year.
PPLD is its own taxing authority with 87% of revenues generated from property taxes.

Comparing PPLD to sister districts on the Front Range:

PPLD Denver Public Library Douglas County Pueblo City-County
Service populations 620,000 619,968 292,167 160,545
Revenue/capita $47.51 $55.83 $74.03 $52.03
Expenditures/capita $7.09 $7.10 $11.17 $6.36
Circulation/card holder 32.25 14.11 43.25 14.11
Number of service outlets 15 24 6 5


east side library

at one time, we had heard that the library system was looking for locations east of powers for a new site; is that still in a plan and if so, when?

West Side

Will you PLEASE stop neglecting the West side of town?!? Our tax dollars pay into the same system and all we get is shelves moved around from one end to the other. There are three pathetic end tables that are suppose to serve as adult work stations, an after-thought of a teen zone and child area. It is infuriating that all effort is placed on building new locations anywhere and everywhere in Colorado Springs EXCEPT the west side. Our ridiculous Rockrimmon branch is clearly an ignored location. It is an insignificantly small, utterly useless location. The couple times I attempted to study at this location were a miserable failure. The adult work stations sit in the aisle adjacent to books, window blinds and computers. There is NO privacy and people reach over you to open and close the blinds. If I could allocate where my tax dollars go, it would NOT be PPLD until this area of the city is addressed!

We see this new facility as

We see this new facility as our first opportunity to launch 21st Century Library Service in a location that is convenient for the entire region. Once we have opened the facility we will begin to incorporate the changes in resources and services into libraries throughout the community. Every neighborhood we serve will benefit from this project!


WOW THUNDERS!! get $$ for the small measelyy service branch at cheyenne mtn on 8th please !! the one on penrose wayyy to small to handle my and others cars !! the one on penrose main suckks !! thanks george!!

Phase II and improvements to the west

We are currently expanding 21st Century Library service into East and Penrose Libraries. In Phase III we will begin to address community library services and spaces, and our five community facilities in the western part of the county will be addressed. As plans are developed for Phase III, we look at opportunities, challenges, and public need to determine how to best serve our 21st century patrons. Your input is always important to us! Watch for ways to take part in planning over the next year.



PPLD Foundation


Pikes Peak Library District
P.O. Box 1579
Colorado Springs, CO 80901
(719) 531-6333