Santa Cruz Downtown Library Mixed Use Feasibility Study

Santa Cruz Downtown Library Mixed Use Feasibility STudy

Santa Cruz, CA

In addition to serving the local Santa Cruz community, the Downtown Library is a critical resource for the entire Santa Cruz Public Libraries system. A Facilities Master Plan, developed by Group 4, identified that the building was overdue for upgrades to the building systems and interior finishes. Group 4’s master plan strategically positioned the Library to win voter support for the systemwide $67M Measure S, which is funding library improvements.

The City of Santa Cruz then commissioned Group 4 to explore the feasibility of relocating Downtown Library to a new, mixed-use development. The library would occupy the ground floor, beneath additional tenant spaces and a public parking garage.

Group 4 collaborated with community members, multiple City departments, downtown stakeholders, and the City Council to develop an appropriately scaled, urban infill project anchored by the new main library. The study evaluated schemes that could mitigate downtown parking demand, enhance residents’ downtown experience and library access, and meet the recommendations of the Library Facilities Master Plan. The study was positively received by City Council and enabled subsequent phases for the potential relocation.


  • Client: City of Santa Cruz
  • Status: Complete