Northwest Library

The Northwest Library is a branch of the Multnomah County Library, in Portland in the U.S. state of Oregon.[1] The branch, which opened in 2001, offers the Multnomah County Library catalog of two million books, periodicals and other materials.[1]

Northwest Library
Northwest Library - Portland, Oregon.JPG
Entrance to the branch
Northwest Library is located in Portland, Oregon
Northwest Library
General information
LocationNorthwest Portland
AddressCorner of N.W. 23rd Avenue and N.W. Thurman Street
Town or cityPortland, Oregon
CountryUnited States
Coordinates45°32′07″N 122°41′56″W / 45.535416°N 122.698949°W / 45.535416; -122.698949Coordinates: 45°32′07″N 122°41′56″W / 45.535416°N 122.698949°W / 45.535416; -122.698949
OpenedOctober 30, 2001
OwnerMultnomah County Library
Technical details
Floor area5,000 square feet (460 m2)
Renovating team
ArchitectHolst Architecture (exterior) and Thomas Hacker and Associates (interior)
Northwest Library


The branch opened on October 30, 2001,[2] and was the first new branch in the Multnomah County system since 1972. At 5,000 square feet (460 m2), the library is designed to accommodate 20,000 volumes. Located in Portland's most densely populated community, it was highly anticipated by neighbors.[3] The building used to be home to the Harris Wine Cellar.[2]

The new library was funded by a $113 million levy passed in 1998, which funded reconstruction or renovation of 12 of the system's 15 branches.[4] In May 2000, Multnomah County officials were considering one location between N.W. 22nd and 23rd avenues and N.W. Lovejoy Street, and another on N.W. 23rd Avenue and Thurman Street.[5] Then-county commissioner Diane Linn worked with county officials to find the location. Including affordable housing in the mixed use design of the building was an important consideration. The Thurman Street location was ultimately selected. Another $77,000 was provided to the branch by the Library Foundation in November 2001, with the majority of that added to a permanent fund for the branch.[6]

Architects for the renovation of the existing building were Holst Architecture for the exterior and Thomas Hacker and Associates for the interior. Northwest General Contractors was the contractor. Structural changes during the renovation included seismic upgrades and improved access for patrons with disabilities. Interior redesign added a meeting room, and the library was made Internet-ready.[7]


  1. ^ a b "Northwest Library". Multnomah County Library. Retrieved August 22, 2012.
  2. ^ a b Staff (October 15, 2001). "Cornerstones for October 15". The Daily Journal of Commerce. Retrieved 8 November 2012.
  3. ^ Kinsey Hill, Gail (November 4, 2001). "For One Day, City's Newest Library Welcomes a Little Noise". The Oregonian.
  4. ^ Austin, David (April 16, 1999). "City Buys Option for Northwest Library". The Oregonian.
  5. ^ Christ, Janet (May 26, 2000). "New Option Pops Up for Northwest Library". The Oregonian.
  6. ^ "Library Foundation raises funds for new Northwest Library". Portland Business Journal. November 16, 2001. Retrieved 8 November 2012.
  7. ^ "Northwest Library History". Multnomah County Library. July 11, 2011. Retrieved November 9, 2012.