Monday-Friday: 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Saturday: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
722 NE 2nd Street
Meridian, ID 83642
The idea for unBound grew out of makerspace activities and community feedback. In 2012, the Meridian Library District secured a grant to purchase its very first 3D printer, primarily for use in teen programs. As our staff streamlined the use of 3D printing in the library and began offering new technology classes and events, it quickly became apparent that our community's need extended beyond those services and programs. Meridian needed spaces and support for entrepreneurs, and the library was uniquely positioned to fill that role. That led to the idea for unBound, a location that would offer access to technology for the purpose of supporting businesses.
In October 2015, unBound opened in its original downtown Meridian location, the old Farmers and Merchants Bank building at 713 N. Main Street. The Meridian Development Corp leased that space to the library for just $1, and we were able to pilot our vision for unBound and continue learning from our community. This innovative technology and business branch went from proposal to operation in only 6 months. For the three years the original building was open, we welcomed over 35,000 visitors. We were a part of people’s projects, lives, and side hustles. We witnessed podcasts organizing community events, introduced people to virtual worlds, and watched ideas become reality.
We closed the original unBound space in February 2019 to make way for the Old Town Lofts development – a mix of apartments, restaurants, shops and office space. This was not a surprise. One of our goals was to help revitalize downtown Meridian, so moving out after just 3 years meant we did our job! We moved back into the Cherry Lane location to set up a temporary “unBound Lite” as we planned for the future of this unique library.
In April 2019, the Meridian Library District purchased the 3,700-square-foot, 2-story AEI Systems Group shop at 722 NE 2nd Street, allowing us to reinstate unBound in the heart of downtown Meridian. The well-known electronics repair shop was built by the Thomson Family in 1949-51. That legacy of entrepreneurship and technology was a perfect fit for unBound.
Design work for the new space was completed May 2020, and construction commenced on June 15, 2020.
The final project cost for unBound's renovation was $1,296,031 – slightly under our $1.3 million budget. The project was paid for with 2020 and 2021 operating funds, in large part with funds from new construction tax revenue, saving plant facility levy funds for the upcoming Orchard Park library project. unBound also received about $40,000 in support from the U.S. Bank Foundation, Idaho Community Foundation, TDS Fiber, First Interstate Bank, and individual donations, thanks in large part to the Meridian Library Foundation. Those grants and donations helped to purchase furniture, equip the building with technology, and support workforce development programs.
unBound opened for services at its new location on April 19, 2021.
The 3,700-square-foot, 2-story building at 722 NE 2nd Street was originally an electronics repair shop called AEI Systems Group. The Meridian Library District worked with MSR Design and CM Company to transform the space into unBound.
Idaho Statesman – April 22, 2021
KIVI – April 20, 2021
KTVB – April 16, 2021
Idaho Business Review – March 30, 2021
Meridian Press – March 17, 2021
BoiseDev – March 15, 2021