Progress Report, January 2018
It's been just a bit over a year since the library acquired the property adjacent to us, and, if there's one thing we've learned...it's that everything takes time. Granted, we jumped on the opportunity to purchase the property, not because we had a definite idea of what we wanted to do with it, but, because we saw it as our best opportunity to both remain in our existing (and much beloved) location AND to build a library addition that would allow us to better serve the needs of our communities.
We spent some time talking with people who'd been involved in previous attempts at expansion and with others who'd undergone or were in the process of renovation efforts at their own libraries. Our summer "social" event, A Novel Affair, in addition to showcasing library services and having fun, was an opportunity to engage with our patrons about services they'd like to see offered, and features that would be appreciated in a library addition. We received further input on patrons wishes and needs via Cable Tomorrow, the Town of Cable's ongoing visioning process. Our Board, in a special meeting, reviewed all of this material and defined our own list of what we considered to be essential features of any library addition.
In the last several months we have established an interview committee and have interviewed three architectural firms, all who have some experience working with libraries. We are currently engaged in the process of visiting projects overseen by these various architects, which we hope will assist us in choosing the best fit for our project, community and budget. So far our travels have taken us east to Eagle River. We anticipate visits to Ely, Duluth/Superior and Iron River. While it can sometimes feel as though the process has stalled, these are weighty decisions, and we very much wish to exercise due diligence!
In the meantime, we and our patrons have enjoyed the use of the property! As you are likely aware, The Katie Flowers Endowment cleared out of the Depot out at the Cable Recreation Park and their book sale is now located in what we are calling the Bookhouse on that property. They had open hours nearly every Saturday through the end of September and were also open for Christmas in Cable. The library has used the property for a couple of MAKERSPACE events, one on how to fix your bicycle and another on starting a fire...without a match!
Stay tuned...we'll keep you posted!
And, so you know, we are always open to hearing about what YOU'D like to see in a library addition!