When will construction start?
If we get the town meeting approval and are awarded the state grant in July, the project will start as soon as the paperwork is signed. It will take quite a few months to finalize the drawings and plans for the building and other permits that will be required. Once finalized the permitting process could take several months. The project will be put out to bid in accordance with state law and regulations. If everything goes smoothly, construction could start in the spring or summer of 2018.
Will there be library services during construction?
The library will be required to provide services during the construction. There are options that will be studied to come up with the location and building to provide the best services for the town.
Will the construction affect the interlibrary loan services?
The library, wherever it is, will provide the same CWMARS, and COMCAT services during the construction.
How about the public WIFI?
Again, the library will do it's best to provide public WIFI.
Is there a place for the Knox Gallery in the new library?
The original, main part of the existing building will become the multipurpose room and serve the functions the Knox Gallery has for the last few years. It will be 50% bigger, and will have access to both bathrooms and a kitchenette along with easily accessible chairs and tables. The Gallery has been a big part of the library and we are committed to making it part of the new library.
Will the Library be LEEDS certified?
There is an incentive grant of $100,000 in the state grant which will help cover the costs of obtaining this certification.
What happens if we don't do this project?
If the state grant does not come through, and or the town meeting approval fails, then we will need to immediately start planning on how to bring the current building up to code. Current violations include an inaccessible bathroom with no heat or hot water, entrance and exit accessibility issues, safety code violations, an asbestos roof, wet basement, and structural issues that though hidden will need to be addressed. The septic system is over half a century old and will need to be replaced. All of these corrections will take a lot of effort to address and there is no grant money available for bandaid solutions. It could be that the townwill spend as much money as we would with the grant but still have the same crowded building with no expansion. The size has limited services to segments of the population like teens and children. State library construction grant rounds have historically been held about every five to ten years. Missing this round means waiting another five years at least.
Is the library looking for funding other than through local tax dollars?
The town grant writer, Dennis Lynch, is writing a grant for federal USDA money. We will be researching other grants as well. Voting the total amount at town meeting allows us to go forward, but does not mean we need to use only town money. Any money we can raise will offset tax dollars. Since many of the payments won't happen until year two and three there is opportunity for monies other than tax dollars to pay for the project.