In 1930, the 2,000 residents of Glenview decided to refinish an empty room in the basement of the Glenview Civic Building into a new library. The library tax, only .0009%, allowed the first library in Glenview to exist but with creativity at the hands of the executive boards. Who could run a library on such a tight budget?

Using the nearby library in the city of Evanston for book loans, and transporting them with the first director’s car, the Glenview library was home to creative thinking and ingenuity, a spirit it continues to exemplify to this day.

Therefore, it needed a website just as ingenious as the library itself.

The Goals

The Glenview Public Library wanted a website that was minimal and clean. This wasn’t just for aesthetics’ sake, though of course that was taken into account. This client wanted a website simple enough that they could continue to grow and expand on it in years to come.

After all, the library is now 90 years old and has plenty of growing left to do! They wanted their website to be easy for their patrons to navigate and that allowed their patrons to find exactly what they needed in just moments of browsing.

The Challenges

Being such a historic library means a heavy build-up of website pages. This meant finding exactly what was needed without a cohesive menu system would be impossible. The clutter would not only be difficult to navigate but would also make it difficult for the library itself to create and publish new content in places it can be found.

In addition, the design of the website was extremely important to the client, meaning that the minimalist design had to flow throughout every step of the web design process. No easy feat for a website with so much information and data stored within it.

The Results We Achieved Together

Using the existing information on the website, we were able to create a custom resource database, easily able to be updated by the library staff on their own, letting their website grow with them and allow for more creative freedom with website content.

The information on this database is organized alphabetically and by category, making it easy for a patron to browse and find information on topics they’re curious about.

Of course, this database was only one part of the minimalist web design features the client asked for. We created tools designed with the client in mind since the library’s main goal was to have a website they could update and furnish themselves in years to come.

This meant we had to make sure simplicity was in mind at every step. Navigation and content had to be made effective and simple, as did the tools we created to allow the library to update its own site in the years to come.

With this, the Glenview Public Library was able to have a website that could function independently and grow with the ever-expanding creativity of the people who work there.

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