CORNWALL, N.Y. (Sept. 12, 2014) — The Cornwall Public Library Board of Trustees announced today it will seek a public referendum to bond $3.68 million to fund major repairs and a renovation plan that will add 30 percent more space.
Karen LaRocca-Fels, the Director of the Cornwall Public Library, said the project is a response to the library’s 2011 Long Range Strategic Plan that surveyed Cornwall residents using focus groups and questionnaires to help shape the library’s future direction. LaRocca-Fels said that overall library use has increased by 142 percent over the last five years while the Cornwall population and school enrollment have also continued to rise.
“Our renovation project will allow the library to grow in size and sophistication to meet the changing demands of our community,” said LaRocca-Fels. “This is a critical investment that will help sustain Cornwall’s wonderful quality of life and strong home values.”
The Library’s Board of Trustees will host a public information session to unveil the project at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, Sept. 17 in the Community Room.
Susanne Vondrak, the President of the Library’s Board of Trustees, said the Library hopes to present a public referendum later this year for voters to approve the issuance of bonds to fund the project. Under the plan, the $3.68 million bond would be financed over 20 years and homeowners in the Cornwall Central School District would pay an estimated $41 more per year per the average market value of a home in the community. The project would be completed in mid-2016.
Vondrak said the renovation project will address a number of urgent repairs to the building including replacing the rook and installing a sprinkler system. The repairs along with the changing demands of library users were the driving forces behind the project.
“Libraries across the region and the nation are transforming into cultural community centers by reconfiguring their buildings to feature more space for people, programming, technology and enrichment activities,” said Vondrak. “Our expansion will also strengthen our partnership with the Cornwall School District and help achieve our shared vision of providing greater access to information, learning and enrichment activities for our community’s young people.”
The renovated library will expanded by 3,300 additional square feet and have many other features including:
• Expanded community room with maximum seating capacity of 112
• Designated local history room
• Dedicated teen room
• Increased gallery space for local artists to display their work
• Four meeting rooms to accommodate local groups
• New circulation and help desks for improved patron service
• New children’s program space
• New family restroom located in the renovated children’s area.
For more information about the project, please visit www.CornwallLibraryRenovation.com