Port Orchard Library getting facelift this summer

The Port Orchard Library will get a minor facelift — inside only.

At the April 16 City Council work session, Library Manager Kathleen Wilson presented drawings of the current and refurbishment front portion of the library, which previously served as the city’s Post Office building.

“We are hoping to create a much more open feeling when you walk into the door,” Wilson said. “When you walk in the door, you see our staff mailboxes, staff checking in books and working on things you don’t necessarily need to see when visiting the library.”

The library has few places inside for adults to work on laptop computers or read periodicals, Wilson noted.

Plans include moving the magazine section from the back into the front of the building and charging the configuration of the computer terminals upfront.

The magazine section will be where the checking out counter is now.

Wilson said a hexagon table, which includes a power post currently in the teen section, will be moved to the front.

Wilson said a wall, separating the library’s circulation area, will be removed to open up the front.

“With the wall removed it opens up the whole area,” she said.

Wilson said the reference desk and overside checkout will be replaced with desks for a combined reference and checkout area, and moved toward the middle of the room.

Wilson said asbestos is in the front part of the facility that contains the non-fiction section. The non-fiction section shelves will be rearranged to create clear paths to the facility’s bathrooms.

“It will be good security feature for us,” Wilson said. “Currently the view to the restrooms are blocked.”

She said every book in the front section will have to be moved during the rearranging because the shelving is bolted to the concrete floor.

“Everything in the front half of the building will have to come out,” Wilson said.

In the back half the library, the shelves can be moved for the new carpet to be placed.

During the refurbishing, a portion of the library will be rewired.

“There are a lot of useless wires coming into the building,” Wilson said. “Our IT department will be rewiring the building for our computer system.”

Public Work Director Mark Dorsey said the City authorized $20,000 to the library for asbestos abatement. Bids have been awarded for the work.

“The library — decided at their own expense — to make some improvements and the library will get an interior facelift, along with new carpet,” Dorsey said.

“It’s not really a remodel, but a refurbishment or rearranging,” Wilson added. “With our new carpet and new paint, and get the last of the old ceiling tiles down, it will look really nice.”

Wilson said the library is raising money for the project.

Kitsap Library System is purchasing the carpet, estimated at $50,000.

Wilson said the KLS has saved funds from the capital improvement for the past two years, which will be used.

“The new desks will cost about $20,000 and we’re also hoping to raise money for new furnishings,” Wilson said. “We still have about $25,000 more we want to raise.”

She estimated the project will cost about $100,000 and is expected to be completed by mid-September.

Wilson said the library will be closed for at least two weeks.


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