Letter: Request for One-Year Period So That 1913 Library Building Can Be Preserved

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I am writing to request adding a one year consideration period to the Memo of Understanding in order to allow a group of concerned residents to work with interested town parties in order to form a plan to save and re-purpose the 1913 library building.

This request for a one year consideration period is to address the fact that many of us (and, it seems, many in the community) have questions that don’t seem to have been addressed yet. For instance, I was there when John Engel said he’d set up a walk through of the 1913 library for architects along with library staff. The two architects who attended this walk through, Marty Skrelunas and Wes Haynes, both said the 1913 Library building was in good shape (my own words, but you can read report results here).

As a taxpayer I’m concerned that we seem to be planning on allocating $10,000,000 in funding without discussing details or carrying costs on the bond and without some type of community discussion around appropriate financial, design, economic and marketing (along with structural and geo-technical data) reports, which would be a disservice to a project of such merit as this transformative library project.

I’m sure (nearly) everyone is in favor of a new library – it seems the only issues are 1) the green and 2) the small original 1913 Library building and 3) learning the full financial picture (since the costs of demolishing the 1913 building and creating terracing, building new walls, landscaping sounds like it would be higher than keeping the original 1913 building in situ). 

This speaks to stepping back, bringing community interests to the table and presenting the data that can encourage a discussion and resolution of these issues so we can all look forward to a transformational, new library campus.

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