library aerial viewIn September 2021, the Library kicked off a planning process to assess the space needs of the library, examine the current facility, and engage the public on the services and spaces they want to see at their library.

Why are we doing this?

The Village’s Capital Improvement Plan 2021-2030 includes a library expansion/remodel for sometime around 2030. At this point, we do not know what shape this project will take. Here are some of the factors under consideration:

  • The building has had significant maintenance issues over the years, especially with the roof and sprinkler system. Other mechanical systems and architectural features are reaching their end of lifespan. In order to remain in this building, we must understand the challenges and costs of maintaining it.
  • Our community is growing. Just as growth creates the need for expanded utilities like water and sewer, it increases demand for other municipal services like the Rec Department and the library. A larger community means more kids at storytime, more people on the waiting list for the latest bestseller, and more people looking for a study room or computer to use.
  • Libraries have changed a lot since this building was designed! Some collections, like ready reference, have disappeared altogether, and more information is available in electronic formats. Other things have not changed as much as we thought they would: our print collection is still well loved and used, and ebook market share has plateaued, so we need to make sure our physical collections can grow along with our community. At the same time, demand for programming, technology equipment, play spaces for families, and room for people to work, study, and meet has increased. Both the changing and enduring functions of libraries in the 21st century make it important to study a possible expansion to the library and redesign of its spaces.

What, exactly, are we doing?

We are working with the firm FEH Design, known for their award-winning work in libraries, to do three things: analyze space needs, study the existing facility, and facilitate a public engagement process.

  • ● Space Needs: FEH is gathering data on our library and how it is used, and making recommendations for square footage based on Wisconsin library standards and regulations like ADA. Their analysis will also help us optimize use of the existing physical space, and help us understand how much room we are likely to need in the future.
  • ● Building Assessment: FEH’s team is analyzing the existing building’s architecture, accessibility, and major building systems including building envelope, mechanical, electrical, plumbing, and IT infrastructure. They will explore the possibility of expanding the building, including whether it is structurally feasible to add a second floor.
  • ● Public Input Process: Any changes made are an important investment for the community, so we need to gather input and understand the community’s long-term vision for the library. The primary strategy for this is to establish an Advisory Task Force made up of a cross-section of our community including residents, business representatives, community leaders, and library users. The Advisory Task Force will identify options to study, develop criteria for evaluating solutions, participate in a planning workshop, and develop recommendations of their preferred solutions to meet the needs and community vision.

How can I get involved?

You can join our Advisory Task Force! There will be five public meetings (schedule below) from November 2021 through January 2022. If these meetings do not fit into your schedule, you might wish to attend the 2-day planning workshop, or SPARK session, on December 7 & 9. You can drop by anytime throughout these two days to participate. This will be an opportunity to give feedback and see that input directly translated into design solutions and project budgets.

No registration is needed to join the Task Force; you can simply attend the meetings. However, if you’d like more information or have questions, please contact Library Director Adele Loria (262-246-5180 or aloria@phpl.lib.wi.us).

 

Advisory Task Force Meeting Schedule

Advisory Task Force (ATF) meeting #16:00PMThursday, November 18, 2021
ATF meeting #26:00PMMonday, November 29, 2021
Public Design SPARK Workshop Day 1
• Explore options with community
• Noon and evening (6:00PM) presentations
• Develop project budgets
All Day (drop in as your schedule permits)Thursday, January 13, 2022
ATF meeting #36:00PMThursday, January 13, 2022
Public Design SPARK Workshop Day 2
• Explore options with community
• Noon and evening (6:00PM) presentations
• Develop project budgets
All Day (drop in as your schedule permits)Friday, January 14, 2022
ATF meeting #46:00PMFriday, January 14, 2022
ATF meeting #5
• Make recommendation of preferred option(s)
6:00PMMonday, January 31, 2022

The Advisory Task Force meetings will be in person and virtual. Depending on your preference, the Zoom information for the meetings is as follows: Meeting ID: 594 144 0811, Dial by your location: 312 626 6799 US (Chicago).