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SCITUATE – The 1,600-square-foot addition under construction at the North Scituate Public Library, 606 West Greenville Road, was snug and secure as the recent snowstorm roared in, and work is on schedule said library Director Leslie McDonough, as construction nears the four month mark.  The main library building, empty apart from blueprints, plans, and construction workers, has been connected to the new addition, which is roofed and floored and taking shape.  Though there is a festive wreath on the door, that’s where the cozy library feeling ends. Inside is a workspace, though one now secured from the elements.
Site superintendent Sherman Vogelaar said “the building is substantially tight and really, at this point, the weather shouldn’t have much of an effect,” he said, adding that the crew planned to continue working no matter what the weather conditions.  Since last autumn’s groundbreaking for the $2 million addition, Vogelaar said there have been “no unexpected problems, no unexpected issues at all.  We started early enough and the weather was good right through Thanksgiving.”

While the roof is on and the outer walls up, the interior is still in the bare bones stage with McDonough pointing to a far corner that will become her new office, a middle area to be a meeting room, and a Silk Lane corner to house archival space built to certain specifications ensuring a climate controlled environment to house significant documents pertaining to Scituate’s history.  The Silk Lane side of the structure will also become the main entrance when the building reopens, later this year. The construction project will offer young patrons an expanded children’s area, too, said Brenda D’Aguanno, children’s librarian, a need which continues to grow for a section that is always busy she said.

Vogelaar said there hasn’t been any problem getting necessary materials for the project, or in getting help, but he compared the cost of materials to the skyrocketing cost of fuel.

A portion of the library collection was moved in August to the temporary location at the IGA Plaza where patrons can obtain books, use public computers, and check in with library staff as in the past.
The interim 1,200-square-foot space, said McDonough, has worked out well in that it is located adjacent to several retail stores and as a result, “we are seeing faces we haven’t seen in the past. People have been really good about the temporary location,” she said. Some have even asked about keeping it open as a branch.  It’s not likely, McDonough said, given the cost.

The new addition is being constructed by way of ongoing fund-raising, a large bequest to the library, and a Champlin Foundations grant.

Plans to add onto the existing building, rather than starting over in a new location, were made after it was determined that patrons wanted their library to remain in the center of the village.  The 1925 structure and its 1984 addition offered 4,940 square feet, but the 1,380-square-foot basement area was being used for sensitive historical documents. McDonough said the basement will be used for the mechanical needs of the building. During the construction process, the entire building will be completely rewired to accommodate the continued use of technology.

General contractor is E.W.Burman, Inc., and architect is R. Drayton Fair, principal of Lerner/Ladds & Bartels of Providence.

Upcoming library fund-raising efforts include with the annual Proper Tea, Feb. 6, Super Bowl Sunday, as a gentle alternative to the day, from 2 to 4 p.m. at the North Scituate Community House and will feature dainty refreshments and soft music. Tickets are $15, $10 for Library Association members.  There will also be a monthly silent auction.

For ticket information, contact the library at 401-647-5133 or check the library’s Web site at www.scituatelibrary.org .

Source: The Valley Breeze