San Mateo County Libraries Rolls Out Zero-Emission Makermobile

New All-Electric Vehicle Takes Free Makerspace Programs on the Road

Media Contact:

Katie Woods
San Mateo County Libraries
(650) 556-5209

SAN MATEO COUNTY, CA — San Mateo County Libraries is thrilled to roll out our brand-new zero-emission, all-electric Makermobile.

The Makermobile is a new outreach vehicle that promises to deliver innovative, high-impact maker programs beyond library walls. The 23-foot-long vehicle is designed to “unfold” at each new destination, releasing three movable carts that will roll out and station around the vehicle, transforming the surrounding location into a bustling makerspace.

“Just as computer labs were essential a generation ago, access to makerspaces with the latest tech is key today,” Sara McDowell, Library Governing Board Chair and San Carlos Councilmember said. “They’re spaces to learn new technical skills, plus practice problem-solving and use creativity. Now the Makermobile can bring that opportunity anywhere, from libraries to summer camps to community events across the county.”

We are celebrating the first stop of the Makermobile with a ribbon cutting at 4:00 PM on Thursday, June 15, at EPACENTER, 1950 Bay Road, in East Palo Alto – next to the site of the future new East Palo Alto Library. Join us for a fun and creative celebration featuring maker activities, live music and refreshments.

Makermobile carts will be outfitted with tech including a Glowforge Pro laser cutter, an Ultimaker S3 3D printer, laptops, iPads, DSLR cameras, coding robots, music-making elements and more.

The Makermobile was customized to San Mateo County Libraries’ specifications to accommodate planned maker programming and equipment. The body was custom fabricated with components that are as lightweight as possible to support maximum vehicle miles traveled on the all-electric system. It is estimated that the Makermobile will get approximately 110 miles per charge, allowing us to reach our more distant and rural communities.

The Makermobile will visit our libraries, schools, parks and other public spaces where community members can easily access it.

“The mission of the Makermobile reflects our systemwide vision – to bring free, accessible opportunities to the public that inspire exploration and promote lifelong learning,” Anne-Marie Despain, Director of Library Services said. “We’re honored to launch the Makermobile so that anyone can be a maker, anywhere.”

The Makermobile is supported by a generous grant from Gilead Sciences. San Mateo County Libraries launched a Makerspace Master Plan in 2017, setting a roadmap to ignite growth, nurture curiosity and create learning experiences for communities of all backgrounds, ages and abilities. Makerspaces are located at Atherton, Belmont, Brisbane and Half Moon Bay libraries, with plans to build additional makerspaces at Foster City, Millbrae and San Carlos in the near future. All 13 of our libraries have 3D printers.


About San Mateo County Libraries
San Mateo County Libraries is a Joint Powers Authority that operates libraries in the communities of Atherton, Belmont, Brisbane, East Palo Alto, Foster City, Half Moon Bay, Millbrae, North Fair Oaks, Pacifica, Portola Valley, San Carlos and Woodside. San Mateo County Libraries ignite growth through transformative experiences. Visit for information about our community libraries, extensive digital and physical collections, innovative services, and numerous online resources and virtual programs and events.