Faced with an exponentially growing community — 200,000 residents projected by 2045 — our district is feeling the full effect of growing pains and inadequate space now for a district of nearly 27,000 residents.
Currently, the Third Street building ranks in the bottom half of libraries in square footage per capita in the state. To be in the upper half, we need to increase our square footage from 17,000 square feet to between 27,040 and 41,764. This would allow us to continue to provide all of our residents with the resources they need and the level of service they deserve.
Since early fall, the Board of Trustees has been working to complete a short- and long-range facilities plan that explores all options in the strategic plan, meets identified needs, and positions the district for success in the future.
“We’re leaving no stone unturned, no option unexplored,” said Library Board of Trustees Member Kendra Adams. “We want to make sure our community feels we’ve investigated all of the options available.”
Priority Space Needs
Defined & Expanded Children’s Area
Additional Programming Spaces
Room for Collection Growth
Adequate Staff Work Space
More Collaboration Spaces
Expanded Quiet Spaces
Increased Storage Space
How did we come to these conclusions?
To meet the goal of having a draft plan in March, the Long Range Facilities Planning Committee has convened weekly to meet with community stakeholders, review properties with commercial brokers, and analyze options. The information is brought before the full Board at a dedicated work session each month.
The Board has already reviewed an option to reconfigure / remodel the Windsor-Severance Library, build a branch in Severance, and relocate staff to co-working spaces. In January, the Board looks to review rent / lease / purchase options and the feasibility of expansion at the Windsor-Severance Library.
No action will be taken until all of the known options have been explored and brought before the Board. Public feedback will be gathered on the draft short- and long-range plan in the spring.
“We’re excited about all of the possibilities the district has for moving forward in this area and solving our space challenges,” Adams said. “We’re working hard to balance meeting all of our community’s needs and making smart financial decisions.”
Six Areas of Exploration
The Board of Trustees is exploring and evaluating space options in six different potential areas, as outlined by the Advisory Group in the Strategic Plan:
- Modify the existing Third Street location.
- Build new space (one large building, a branch, an administrative space, or a co-working facility).
- Rent, lease, or buy a facility within the district.
- Collaborate with area partners on a shared facility.
- Evaluate dispersed staffing opportunities.
- Explore public-private partnerships.