Kaslo Library Director addresses new impending facility

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The Kaslo and District Public Library is moving on up in the world, announcing a partnership with the Village to build a new downtown library facility.

Library Director Eva Kelemen says they've made the ground floor of the 1898 City Hall a welcoming space, but after 38 years at the location it’s time to grow and move on.

She says no further upgrades can be made to address the operational and service challenges, adding when compared with other BC libraries, serving similar populations and adjusting to population, the Kaslo Library is the smallest and about one third the ideal size.

Kelemen says the project will cost approximately three million dollars and Columbia Basin Trust has already covered $300,000; a fundraising plan is in place and they’re currently forming a fundraising committee.

She says the Village will be the building owner and is already accepting donations, adding so far the group is thrilled with the communities support.

An application was submitted for an Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program grant last October to help with funding and Mayor Suzan Hewat says although they're hoping construction work will finish in the next three to four years, the timeline will be more clear if their grant application is successful.

Kelemen says the current space doesn't have room to grow their collection but the new facility would offer enough space for a variety of new amenities including different areas for kids and teens, programming space with a kitchen for staff, computer space and more.

She adds the library has a large membership including 43% of residents.