Rundel Library Terrace Structural Improvements Phase IV Project

  N. Terrace - E. Sidewalk The Rundel Library is a nationally registered historic building surrounded by terraces on all sides of the building. The library and terraces are bounded by Broad Street, South Avenue and Court Street, directly adjacent to the Genesee River in the City’s Central Business District. The library and terraces were constructed in the 1930s over the Johnson & Seymour Raceway (1817) and the old Erie Canal bed (built during canal construction c. 1821, later repurposed for the Rochester Subway) and supported by a steel and concrete framing system. 

Download site location map  

About the Project 

N. Terrace Closed The project is the fourth phase in a multi-year effort to evaluate and repair the structural condition of the library and terraces. The present project focuses on the north terrace and east sidewalk. Due to the advanced age and exposure to the elements, the north riverfront terrace and east sidewalk were evaluated and found to exhibit severe structural deterioration. The north terrace area is now closed to the public pending repair. 

The project will reconstruct the elevated north terrace and east sidewalk, structural concrete and steel framing, slabs, columns and foundations. It will create a more vibrant public space that celebrates the Rundel Library and the history of the Erie Canal aqueduct. The renovated north riverfront terrace will potentially include river viewing platforms, ADA accessible ramps, pavement bands and features (interpretive of the historical canal and subway rails below), public artwork,  lighting upgrades, seating and space for public gathering and use.

North Terrace

 N. Terrace LaBella Associates with Bayer Landscape Architecture and Bero Architecture were selected through the City’s Request for Proposal (RFP) process to provide engineering, planning and landscape architectural services for the project. Working with a project advisory committee, they have developed concepts for the north terrace that draws from the history of the site (raceway, aqueduct, Erie Canal, subway), its connection to the river, and the civic, intellectual and architectural significance of the Rundel Library.

East Sidewalk

 E. Sidewalk The project will reconstruct the elevated east sidewalk along South Avenue, including structural repairs, and/or infill of the areaway underneath, replacement of the existing bus shelter, and updated amenities.

Project Documents 

Click to download (pdf format)

Estimated Project Timeline

  • Consultant Procurement: spring - winter 2016
  • Structural Inspection: spring – summer 2017
  • Concepts: summer 2017 – spring 2018
  • Public Information Meeting: May 2018
  • Final Design and Estimates: summer - fall 2018
  • Bid & Award Phase: early 2019
  • Construction: spring 2019 – fall 2020

Schedule is subject to adjustment


If you have questions and comments about the project, please contact Jason VanDemark in the City’s Bureau of Architecture and Engineering at 428-7356, or by email.