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KENTVILLE PUBLIC LIBRARY STATUS UPDATE

Posted on April 21, 2015

Having received numerous and frequent inquiries through the office of the Mayor regarding the status of the relocation of the Kentville Public Library, the Town of Kentville has issued the following release in Q & A format to inform citizens, visitors and library patrons of the process being undertaken to determine the future location of the library, and clarify what has been done, is being done and what will be done.

Q:  How long has the Town been considering the relocation of the Kentville Library?

A:  Dating back to the “Friends of the Kentville Library” group, the discussion around a new library location began about ten years ago.

Q:  What is the current status of the Friends of the Library and how much money has been raised?

A:  The Friends group was instrumental in raising awareness in the community about the need for a new library space and advocating for that new space.  The group contributed significantly in the area of research and community feedback gathering.  That data has been reviewed by Council and staff, and will continue to be referenced as we move ahead on the library project.  The Friends disbanded before reaching the point of fundraising, and have been inactive for the last few years.  It is anticipated that there will be a need for a remobilization of the group to assist with space design, functionality and fundraising.

Q:  When is the library required to be moved?

A:  The Library will require a new home by the spring of 2016 due to construction of a new Cornwallis River Bridge that will commence at that time.  Bridge construction will change the landscape of that particular section of Kentville which will necessitate the demolition of the current library building.

Q:  What is Town Council’s position on a new space or building?

A:  The Town is seeking an appropriate space to rent that can house the library and support its successful operation.  Town Council’s preference would be to see the library fill a currently vacant space downtown, but proposals from developers for new buildings have also been considered.  It is not the intention of the Town to build and own a new building for the library.

Q:  Do you have a location selected? 

A:  There are four proposals currently under consideration by Council as a result of the issued RFP.  All potential locations are within the downtown area.

Q:  What does the library cost, and who pays for it?

A:  The cost of operating the Kentville library is shared.  The Town of Kentville pays for building related expenses such as rent, heat, lights, cleaning, and overall maintenance.  The current cost to the Town is about $35,000 annually.  All program related expenses including the books, library staff, computers, and program delivery are paid for by the Annapolis Valley Regional Library Service.  Future costs are unknown and will be determined through examination of the current proposals and selection of a new site.

Q:  Who are the users of the Kentville library?

A:  As of February 2015 there are 5290 users of the Kentville Library.  53% of users are citizens of the Town of Kentville and 47% are residents from the surrounding areas of Kings County.

Q:  Will funding be sought from other levels of government to support the new library?

A:  It is the Town’s intention to request support from the County of Kings for the new library, as well as from Provincial and Federal levels of government.

The Town of Kentville is committed to finding the best possible space in which to place the library.  Council is weighing options and potential locations with the goal of achieving a balance that considers functionality, sustainability, size, location and cost.   Additional questions about the library relocation can be directed to Mayor David Corkum, 902-679-2502 or dcorkum@kentville.ca or CAO Mark Phillips 902-679-2501 or mphillips@kentville.ca