Previously located in the center of town since 1904, the library outgrew its Carnegie building years ago and has relocated adjacent to a site contiguous with the nearby elementary school.  The $11 million, 15,500 square-foot, two-story library is organized in 3 wings: a children’s wing, a gallery/meeting wing and a two-story adult service wing.

Each wing of the crisp building features signature “lighthouse” clerestories and soaring interior spaces that bring daylight deep into the interior volumes.  In Edgartown where widow’s walks and lighthouses abound, the design took cues from the local architecture to inform the overall massing and design.  To achieve simultaneous “uplift” and “anchor,” the building combines a solid brick perimeter with tall windows in addition to the wrap-around clerestories.

The Edgartown Public Library contains one of Martha’s Vineyard’s most important historical book and painting collections. The building is in a historic district subject to aesthetic and design restrictions. Tappé Architects, Inc. was the Architect of Record, Celia Imrey of Imrey Studio was the lead designer.  LEED silver is targeted.

Foot traffic into the library in April … numbered nearly 5,500 people — up significantly from last year and more than double what we experienced in the busiest years at our previous site on North Water Street. But even more dramatic is the way people have been staying here for hours, finding comfortable reading nooks all over the building and settling into our quiet study and meeting rooms.”

Lisa Sherman, Director




Our school clients rely on us for full spectrum services from system wide feasibility studies to school planning and construction. We understand current trends in educational curriculum and the evolving requirements of specialized learning. This expertise is reflected in many completed new and renovated academic facilities for both public and private schools. Our designs are unified around the goal of creating carefully scaled and engaging learning environments flexible enough to support both group and individual learning.



National and international clients turn to us for informed current thinking on library design. We have acted as the prime Architect and also as a consulting designer for library projects throughout the country, enabling us to share our expertise in a broader geographic area. Our collaborative approach, combined with our understanding of innovations in library design and the delivery of library services ensure that our libraries are vital and dynamic facilities, transforming individual lives and enhancing communities.



Colleges and universities have engaged Tappe Architects to assist with diverse projects such as student centers, libraries, learning commons, dormitories and laboratories as well as campus master plans. Our list of clients includes MIT, Wellesley College, Endicott College, Tufts University, Curry College and Norfolk State University. We have acted as Architect-of-Record and as consulting architect on academic library design and interiors. Appreciated for the quality of our service, we have completed multiple projects on the same campus.



Whether an art museum or event space, we are always interested in taking on engaging projects of all types. We have completed many municipal projects including a combined police/fire station, town halls and studies for combined municipal facilities – often several for the same community. Our portfolio includes residential facilities as well as spaces for retail and hospitality. All of these various commissions have in common a rigorous and collaborative planning process and elegant and thoughtful execution.