Antioch Library has had an over-60-year history in its current location at the corner of Shawnee Mission Parkway and Antioch Road, beginning in 1956 as a 7,200 square foot leased space with parking for 30 cars. Now, plans are in the works to re-locate Antioch Library to the new Merriam Community Center campus.
In 1961, following legislation that permitted the Johnson County Library Board of Directors to own property, the Antioch building and site were purchased. The Antioch building has been expanded twice, in 1970 and 1983, and was last renovated in 1995 when the Central Resource Library was opened. Since then, Antioch has been providing space for the Friends of the Library, JCCC’s Adult Education program, and has functioned as the home office for systemwide Programming, Outreach, and Information Services staff.
New site, new building
In 2017, the City of Merriam approached the Library to consider relocating Antioch Library to the new Merriam Community Center campus, at the 6000 block of Slater. After a study with the city, the Library Board approved this path. The new library is anticipated to be approximately 15,000 square ft. single story building and include a drive-thru for holds pickup and material return. Like Lenexa City Center Library, the Merriam Plaza Library will utilize the nearby parking structure and pay for a portion of the upkeep costs.
The Library and the City of Merriam have been meeting to discuss design, planning, and construction and recently the City of Merriam has transferred the land for the new building to the Library.
Public engagement and design
In March 2021, the Library Board and Johnson County Board of County Commissioners approved the selection of Kansas City-based Dake Wells Architecture to design the facility. In spring and summer of 2021, the Library conducted public engagement sessions both virtually and at the new site. Design for the new library was completed in fall 2022
The project’s construction contract was approved by the Library Board and Public Building Commission in November 2022 and you will see construction activities ramping up in 2023. Construction is expected to wrap up in early 2024 with opening anticipated later that year.
We know you probably have questions about what to expect during this building process, so we’ve put together an FAQ that addresses more details about the project. Stay tuned to our Merriam Plaza Library page and follow @jocolibrary on social media for construction updates and photos. You can also drop us a line if you have any questions.