May 08, 2024 Baltimore County

RANDALLSTOWN, MD — Baltimore County Executive Johnny Olszewski today announced that the County plans to acquire a 90,000 square-foot property for a shared 21st-century facility that will house a new, expanded Randallstown branch of the Baltimore County Public Library and a brand-new Department of Recreation and Parks center.

The new joint facility, located in the heart of Randallstown at 8212 Liberty Road, will be supported by over $41 million in state and local funds. With its location in the heart of the Liberty Road corridor, this state-of-the-art facility will facilitate revitalization efforts and serve as a community hub in an area that ranks “high” on the CDC’s Social Vulnerability Index.

“Libraries and recreational amenities play a crucial role in creating vibrant and thriving communities. This new, combined 21st-century space in Randallstown will be a hub for learning and social connections, as well as a space where residents of all ages can be active – together,” said Baltimore County Executive Johnny Olszewski. “I thank Speaker Jones for her leadership on this project, as well as the support from all of our state and local partners, on this first-of-its-kind project in Baltimore County.”

“Today’s announcement represents the State’s commitment to bring additional education and recreational opportunities to communities in Northwest Baltimore County,” said Maryland Speaker of the House Adrienne A. Jones. “This state-of-the-art facility will also provide critical community and social services to families, students, and seniors in the region.”

The current Randallstown library – built in 1967 – serves a community of approximately 50,000 residents and continues to see significant use with over 100,000 customers last year and the highest number of public computer users per square foot of all Baltimore County Public Library branches. The site currently has insufficient space to support much-needed program expansion at its existing location.

The proposed expanded Randallstown branch will provide approximately 50,000 square feet of dedicated, accessible space for library use — nearly twice the size of the current location.

The library portion of the new site will also offer:

  • Space to accommodate over 200,000 visitors annually,
  • Public meeting rooms to accommodate large-scale library and community events, as well as individual and group study rooms,
  • An all-age makerspace/creative arts space,
  • Separate teen and “tween” spaces,
  • Public desktop computers and laptop areas, and more.

The Randallstown library and recreation center will also continue to offer “Beyond the Bell” afterschool programming, teen projects for school service-learning hours, sensory programming, free summer lunches for school-age children, one-on-one access to social workers, “My Librarian” appointments and more. Additionally, the Randallstown Branch partners with the Cash Campaign for free tax-preparation during tax season.

“Based on the traffic levels and usage of the Randallstown Branch, it is clear that the community is clamoring for this 21st century library space with more technology and modern amenities,” said Baltimore County Public Library CEO Sonia Alcántara-Antoine. “This state-of-the-art, dual-purpose building will remove barriers and create access to a breadth of County resources for the community to learn, work and play all under one roof. It undoubtedly will help us fulfill our vision of empowering and engaging individuals for a more inclusive and connected Baltimore County. We are excited and grateful for the endorsement and financial support from the State of Maryland and Baltimore County to make this innovative project a reality.”

The new facility will also provide the Randallstown community with approximately 30,000 square feet in new recreation opportunities aligned with the community’s growing and changing needs and offer an open gymnasium area with flexible, modular programming space with a walking track and several indoor courts for year-round activities, including:

  • Pickleball
  • Basketball
  • Volleyball
  • Futsal
  • Soccer

“We are excited to get started on this transformational project along the Liberty Road corridor, and looking forward to a new and collaborative with Baltimore County Public Library,” Baltimore County Department of Recreation and Parks Director Bob Smith. “We often hear about the need for more recreational options in this community and this new space represents the County’s continued focus on meeting the needs of our residents. Many thanks to County Executive Olszewski, Speaker Jones, Councilman Jones and our other local and state partners for their tremendous support and vision for this project.”

By sharing, one centralized site, Baltimore County Public Library and the Department of Recreation and Parks will be able to provide increased access to shared services as well as cross-departmental and intergenerational collaborations.

The new shared Randallstown library and recreation center, which will be located approximately one mile from the current Randallstown Branch, is also conveniently located to public transportation and is in close proximity to Scotts Branch Elementary School other Baltimore County Public schools.

“I am thrilled to see Baltimore County moving forward with this innovative and exciting project to bring a new Randallstown Library and Recreation Center to Liberty Road," County Councilman Julian Jones said. "This project will be a great addition and an exciting new resource for our residents in west Baltimore County. Thank you to County Executive Johnny Olszewski, House Speaker Adrienne Jones, BCPL Director Sonia Alcántara-Antoine, and Recreation and Parks Director Bob Smith for working together to move this project forward.”

To ensure this project best meets the needs of the surrounding community, County officials will host a community input meeting next month to seek feedback on the proposal. Additional details for the community input meeting will be announced in the coming weeks.