An artistic rendering of the DCL’s freestanding library project. (COURTESY OF KING & KING ARCHITECTS)
By Hayleigh Gowans
The DeWitt Community Library’s site plans to build an $8.3 million freestanding library off of Jamesville Road gained approval by the DeWitt Planning Board on May 12, and officials said they hope to begin site work soon.
“This is a critical milestone for the library,” said DCL Executive Director Wendy Scott. “I would like to thank the members of the Town of DeWitt Planning Board, our design team at King & King and the DCL trustees for their teamwork, diligence and commitment to a new community library for Jamesville and DeWitt.”
For the past decade, DCL officials have been looking to get the library out of its limited rented space at ShoppingTown Mall and move into a bigger building so they can offer a wider array of services to the area. Their solution is to build a freestanding two-story library on a subdivision of land on 5146 Jamesville Road, a 7.6 acre property currently owned by J.K. Construction.
The total area of the building is about 24,000 square feet across two floors, and 80 parking spaces have been designed for the parking lot. A tower, which can be seen in the artistic renderings, has a functionality of allowing patrons to be able to see where the library is located as much of the building may not be visible from the main road because the project will be built into a steady decline.
“The [library] board did a nice job of giving the building a residential feel to it,” said Steven Schroeder, chairman for the planning board at the March 10 public hearing for the project.
The library relocation project is expected to cost somewhere around $8.3 million, but almost $3 million has been set aside by the library, according to Scott. In the May 17 budget vote, the library is seeking an additional $54,526, over the 2015 tax levy, which would result in a tax rate of $88.69 per $100,000 home assessed value. Scott said the library is also applying for state grants to provide additional funding, and will begin a community fundraising campaign.
Scott said the library hopes to begin site preparation soon, and the construction phase of the project could take 10 months to a year.
For more information about the DCL and its freestanding library project, go to dewhome.wordpress.com.
I am a reporter for the Eagle Bulletin and Cazenovia Republican at Eagle News. I report on topics ranging from town and village government, business, news and features. I am a 2014 graduate of the Roy H. Park School of Communications and have a degree in Journalism and a minor in Psychology.