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Library board wants to complete expansion project

By Staff | Apr 1, 2009

It may not be this year, or next year, but some day Rugby Heart of America Library officials want to fulfill its plans to install an elevator to provide handicap-accessibility to the lower level.

Initially, an elevator was part of the library’s expansion blueprint, but due to high costs, and lack of enough public support through a special bond issue vote, the project had to be scaled back, and no elevator.

The main level of library houses the reading materials as well as the computers for public use, but the lower level is just as essential, says Amy Bryn, librarian.

It’s there where the children’s reading programs are conducted; where public exhibits are held; where adult education G.E.D. class meets; as well as other uses.

That planned addition has since been completed, and it’s been an asset to the library, providing more space for reading materials and displays, new handicap-accessible restrooms and larger office space.

However, the library board still would like to see an elevator installed in the future.

“It’s important to make all levels accessible to all,’ Bryn said. “That space (in the basement) gets a lot of use by the public.”

Some planning with Lotvedt Construction has started, but there still are no cost estimates for installing an elevator. It would have to be installed in the older portion of the building since the west addition completed two years ago did not include a basement. The plans would also include a handicap-accessible restroom in the basement as well, Bryn said.

Donations keep trickling in, and grants and other funding sources, including the Community Chest, are being applied for to help raise funds for an elevator.

Bryn said it’s a project that has no timetable, but would like to be finished sooner than later.

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