Cleveland Public Library, Memorial-Nottingham Branch, Cleveland, Ohio
The Memorial-Nottingham Branch of the Cleveland Public Library sits on a park-like site near the eastern fringe of the City of Cleveland, at 17109 Lake Shore Boulevard.
The property now occupied by the library branch was once that of Villa Angela Academy, a Catholic all-girls’ high school that closed its doors here in 1990, upon its merger with nearby Catholic all-boys’ high school, St. Joseph High School. Villa Angela, founded in 1850, and thus the oldest Catholic school in Cleveland’s diocese, had occupied this lakefront site since 1878.
In the early 1970s, Villa Angela enlisted the locally renowned architectural firm of Richard Fleischman & Associates to design a new open plan school. That low-slung Modernist assemblage of quirky forms and colors was occupied by the school in 1972.
By 1991, The Cleveland Public Library had acquired the former Villa Angela Academy site and buildings, and again called on Fleischman’s firm to renovate its Modernist open plan school into a branch library. The structure also houses the Library’s Technical Services, The Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped, as well as off-site book storage.
The Memorial-Nottingham Branch of The Cleveland Public Library is adjacent to both Euclid Beach and Wildwood Park, several linked components of Cleveland Lakefront State Park. All are interconnected by ample landscaping, pedestrian and bike trails, nature walk, other park amenities, and scenic vistas of Lake Erie.