A new 14,000 square foot floor plan has been approved by the Geneseo Public Library Board of Trustees as the first phase of a new library facility building project. 

A new 14,000 square foot floor plan has been approved by the Geneseo Public Library Board of Trustees as the first phase of a new library facility building project. 

The new library size and design reflects the realities of the current state of the economy on fund-raising efforts, and is also planned to be more environmentally conscious than the current facility, said board vice president Holly McAvoy. 

The library board worked closely with the architect to create a facility design that meets the needs expressed by community members through the planning process.

The new facility will have:

• Expanded space to house the Library’s collection of books and other materials

• Increased study and quiet reading space

• Additional meeting rooms

• Dedicated genealogy research space

• More efficient circulation desk and work areas space

• Increased parking

• A location central to the educational corridor. 

Importantly, the new facility will be better able to provide computer and technological resources in demand by the community, said McAvoy. 

To be located on Chicago Street, north of Ogden Avenue, the proposed building is roughly twice the size of the current library building, but represents a significant cut in square footage from the last design. 

“We know that with the state of the economy, we are not going to be able to build the library we need right away, due to a lack of grants we were counting on.  The new plan allows for a smaller, but more technologically advanced facility to be built now.  But it also allows for future additions so that we can grow with the needs of the community,” explained Gary ZumMallan, president of the board of trustees.

The initial building was intended to be 20,000 square feet, based on the recommendation of a library building consultant and a patron study that was conducted several years ago.

The new building will cost an estimated $3 million to build. A total of $2,196,278 has already been donated, pledged or raised for this project. 

A new fund-raising push will be undertaken by library volunteers to raise the final $900,000. The
goal is to begin construction in April or May of 2010, pending city approval of the new site plan and the success of the final fund-raising push. 

“I was so happy to see how quickly the fund-raising came together for the new baseball fields,” said McAvoy. “It shows how generous this community can be to support projects that are meaningful.”

The architect of the project is Alan Armbrust, AIA, with STR Partners in Chicago.  Armbrust was initially selected for this project based on specific library building expertise.  In addition a local architect will serve as an on-site building consultant when the project moves to that phase.

The Geneseo Public Library District serves more than 13,100 citizens, covering 196 square miles. 

Managed by an automated circulation system, the library currently has more than 55,000 books, 699 audio recording and 887 DVD and videos available for use by community members. 
A total of 175,607 items were checked out in the past year.  As a member of the Prairie Area Library System, the GPLD also provides patrons with access to thousands of additional items. 

The library also has eight computers available for public use as well as free wireless Internet access.