The Prueter Library gives residents and visitors access to over 800,000 books, videos, and other materials through the Ventura County Library System.
Services include children's storytime, book discussion groups, online e-library, multimedia materials, books and videos in English and Spanish, periodicals, inter-library loans, computers, microfilm/microfiche readers, and a homework center. Visit the City's calendar to find out about Library events each month. For more information about the Library and its services, visit the Prueter Library website. Check out the their "eLibrary" online resources.
The Ray D. Prueter Library was dedicated on September 22, 1989 - a $2 million, 15,064-square foot building with a book capacity of 65,000 volumes for all Port Hueneme residents to enjoy for generations to come.
In 1960 the "new" 3,030 square foot Port Hueneme Library opened at 510 Park Avenue, and in 1982 became the first branch of the Ventura County Library Services Agency to be automated.
In 1984 the Friends of the Port Hueneme Library organization was established, and as a result of the City and County's joint 1985 needs assessment study of library service in Port Hueneme, a plan for a new larger facility was developed.
The City of Port Hueneme and the County of Ventura signed a joint powers agreement for construction, operation, and maintenance of a library in the Port Hueneme Community Center complex, leading to the August 1988 groundbreaking ceremony for the Ray D. Prueter Library, in honor Port Hueneme's former Mayor who served from 1962 to 1974.
Light is the essence of architect Scott Ellinwood's design for the library. Soft, natural light washes the interior by day. Sensors then switch on electric light as daylight fades, and the building shines from within like a lantern welcoming patrons after dark. The wave-like forms of the library roof are designed to let in and control natural light to provide a comfortable amount of light without glare.
The natural light creates a more appealing interior than one lit by electric light and also saves energy and money. The energy design concept is to use daylight for interior illumination throughout patron and work areas. The building uses clerestories and windows glazed with high-transmittance, heat absorbing glass. The design also uses very efficient electric heat pumps for heating and air conditioning.
The mosaics made by artist Helle Scharling-Todd are designed to express the conflicting energies found in the ever-changing sea. Beginning outside the library, Italian glass mosaic tesserae swirl through the entry as if the edge of the tide had crystallized in vibrant color. On the far wall, two different wave forms provide additional jewel-like color.
Additional art is provided in the neon-lit archway of solid geometric forms spanning the entry to the Children's Room.
Special care was used to transplant the Windmill Palm (Excelsia Chamaerops) from the old library site to the entry planter of the new building in 1989. This specimen is unique for its dramatic, multi-trunk shape.