Langston Hughes Memorial Library Langston Hughes Memorial Library / Chester County, PA, USA

Langston Hughes Memorial Library

Functions: Light Diffusion
Applications: Facades
Mesh: Shade
Attachment: Eclipse
  • Location: Chester County, PA, USA
  • Year Completed: 2011
  • End Use: Academic
  • Architect: Brian Garrahan
  • Prime Design Firm: Farytak Veisz Hopkins Duthie
  • General Contractor: Bob Smith Contractors Inc.
  • Owner: Lincoln University


Langston Hughes Memorial Library is located on the campus of historic Lincoln University whose roots date back to the early 1800’s. The school was renamed after Abraham Lincoln in 1866 and became the first American institution to specialize in arts and sciences higher education for male youth of African descent.  Famous alumni of Lincoln University include Langston Hughes (poet) and Thurgood Marshall (Supreme Court justice).  The Langston Hughes Memorial Library houses 185,000 volumes, featuring an extensive collection of materials representing all aspects if the Black experience (both African American and African).  The current student population is approximately 2,000.

In 2011, the library was completely remodeled and the building façade was replaced with a new glass curtain wall featuring large windows to allow abundant natural light into the space from the outside and open views to the campus center from the inside.  Vertical architectural mesh panels were incorporated into the design to shade sunlight entering the huge windows.


Cambridge Architectural installed twenty stainless steel mesh panels in a fin configuration, positioned perpendicularly with the façade. Each mesh panel was 2’ 6” wide and measured over 20 feet high.  Cambridge utilized its Shade mesh pattern and secured it to the structure with a modified Eclipse attachment system.


The Langston Hughes Memorial Library mesh installation was part of an overall sustainable building design by the architect, Farytak Veisz Hopkins Duthie.  The reflective, yet see-though properties of the mesh provided energy efficient solar shading benefits to the facility as well as a new, visually compelling building façade.

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