James B. Hunt Jr. Library
A technology-forward learning space


Interior Architecture, Architecture


Designed as a technology-forward learning library for a major research university, the James B. Hunt Jr. Library at North Carolina State University, Raleigh, offers a social platform where students and researchers can engage collaboratively in their work. The library serves both as NC State’s second main library and the intellectual and social heart of the university's Centennial Campus plan while setting a new benchmark for technologically-sophisticated collaborative learning spaces.

Technical details

Education & Research, Installation & Commissions, Library, Public Space, Workspace, Sustainability
Raleigh, North Carolina, United States of America

NCSU Libraries


Executive Architect: Clark Nexsen (formerly PBC+L)

230 000 ft²
Design Architect, Interior Architect

Outfitted with a collection of colorful “disruptive” learning spaces filled with dynamic furnishings that are located adjacent to more traditional study rooms, the building’s design recognizes the power of chance encounters and celebrates the role physical space plays in the intellectual stimulation of its users. Technology zones are integrated throughout the Library as well, while interactive digital surfaces and high-definition video displays deliver both programmed and live-feed information. The Library’s Game Lab serves as a testing lab for the video game design and development program and provides students with a fun study break area while the Tech Showcase allows users to experiment with new technology and borrow the latest electronic devices. Unlike most libraries, where staff areas dispersed in clustered on each floor, the Hunt Library features a centralized administrative floor, allowing students to set the tenor and pitch each floor’s social spaces.

The Hunt Library employs the use of the bookBot, an automated book delivery system, for the Library's two million volume collection. This highly effective cost and space saving measure reduced the building area by 200,000 GSF, allowing more of the University’s budget and library space to be allocated towards technology and collaborative learning spaces.

The LEED Silver building provides abundant natural light, outdoor workspaces and expansive views of the nearby lake. Many sustainable design features are integrated into the building, including fritted glass and a fixed external aluminum shading system that help diminish heat gain while maximizing views and ambient natural light. Ceiling-mounted active chilled beams and radiant panels provide heating and cooling while rain gardens and green roofs manage stormwater.