The signs in downtown Marcellus still point people in search of the Marcellus Free Library to Slocombe Avenue. But the library there is no longer filled with books and people seeking entertainment and knowledge.
Instead a new library on Maple Street offers residents a haven filled with storybook characters and historic texts while the former library site sits nearly vacant, awaiting its new owners -- the village -- to take possession
During a public hearing held Dec. 8, Mayor Mike Plochocki asked if there were any residents who opposed the village's purchase. With no opposition, village Clerk Dawn O'Hara said the meeting went rather quickly and residents in favor of the purchase spoke up as to why.
"The main thing is people felt that the parking lot behind the library needed to be used as continued municipal parking," Plochocki said. "People very strongly wanted it to be used as it had for many decades."
"The parking lot behind the library we do intend to use as parking for the village hall," he added.
Secondly, the building holds a lot of history. For 75 years it housed the Marcellus Free Library prior to the build and move to Maple Street; before becoming a public building, it was a private residence dating back to the 1800s. Another major concern of the residents was to maintain the property so as to not lose that historic value.
History and parking aside, there was also concern for the amount of floor space in the current village hall, which isn't much space for the staff to move around in.
"Some citizens also pointed out that the current village office space is very cramped and they wanted the village to have the option of having that (additional space)," Plochocki said.
As for the library building itself, all options are being considered -- selling the property, using it as village office space and or using it for community needs. The board will continue to seek public input and take all ideas into consideration until a decision is made on the use of the building.