Recently the Township decided to move forward with plans for a new building for us! We are excited! Our current building is more than 50 years old and was not designed with all of the uses for which our residents currently use the library. ………………………………………….. ………………………………………………………..
The new building will be much more environmentally friendly and energy efficient, and is designed to provide much more of an open, naturally lit environment. The Library recently applied for a grant from the New Jersey library construction fund for up to 50% of the cost of the new building.
The new building will allow us to provide more adult, teen and children’s programming, expand our computer related services and will be fully handicapped accessible.
The new building will be located on Bartle Avenue, in the downtown, next to the site of the existing building. It is designed to integrate with the Township’s downtown redevelopment plans, and is expected to play a big role in making our downtown area more attractive. The existing building will remain open as the new building is under construction. And don’t be concerned that the new building is three stories – we will have an elevator for patrons located just inside the main entrance to the library area
The main floor of the building will include a multi-purpose room which will be available for all kinds of exciting programming, for both adults and children. It will also be accessible at times when the library itself is closed so that it will be available for other public events. And we will have an emergency generator to help provide emergency services in the downtown in the case of severe storms or other emergencies.
Our main check-in area will be on this floor as will much of our adult services. We will have plenty of patron seating and more accessible computer services on this floor as well.
The second floor of the new building is designed for the future and the future is here! There will be plenty of reading and study rooms, as well as a Tech Lab! The Tech Lab will allow us to provide all kinds of new and different programs, for both adults and children, and will be built specifically to be flexible in terms of future needs.
Our teen and children’s areas will be on the third floor. We are planning for teens to be on one side of the floor with younger children on the other. There will be a separate “teen room” for teen activities, which might include homework or computer activities, as well as separate seating and reading areas for teens.
The children’s’ section of the floor will have not only reading and computer space, but also an activity room and a separate story time area. We’ll have more room than we do currently to provide programs for children and also more room for the adults who accompany children to the library.
We are excited about the new building and very excited about all the new and improved programs and events we will be able to provide to Scotch Plains residents. We are grateful to the Township for its support for the new building and we really look forward to working with the Township – and our patrons – as we move forward.