Library to host open house on expansion next week

For years, the Mesa County Public Library District has been contemplating what to do with what it considers to be the overcrowded, outdated central library.

Now that administrators have the makings of a plan, they want to hear what the public thinks.

County residents are invited to attend one of two open houses Monday and Tuesday to view what a renovated and expanded central library might look like and offer their input. Conceptual drawings will be available, library trustees and staff will be on hand to answer questions, and attendees can fill out comment cards.

“We want to unveil the results of the feasibility study and get the community’s feedback on what we’ve done so far,” library spokesman Bob Kretschman said.

The proposed $5.5 million project would add 9,000 square feet to the 36,000-square-foot facility at 530 Grand Ave. Plans call for a new multipurpose room, small study rooms, outdoor patio space and expanded areas for reading and studying.

Library supporters were rejected twice in the mid-2000s to raise property taxes to build a new central library, which was established in the early 1950s and originally served as a grocery store. The library now plans to use existing money in its fund balance to pay for construction and will not ask for additional taxes.

The library’s Board of Trustees is expected to hire an architect next month. Construction could begin next April and be complete in May 2013.


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