Paradis library to go out for bids early 2010

September 30, 2009 at 10:27 am  | Mobile Reader | Pring this storyPrint 

A new, 6,341-square-foot library in Paradis is currently scheduled to go out for bids early next year and be completed in 2011, according to Library Director Mary desBordes.

Right now, the library is in the schematic design phase that will determine the exterior concept and how the inside spaces are laid out. In October, desBordes hopes to bring the final design to the Library Board for approval.

“We want to fast tract this project,” she said. “The intention is that the Library Board members will get a chance to look at the design before the meeting so that they can offer input or ask questions.”

Following approval, the project will enter the design development phase, which will nail down final details, such as what furniture will be used and how certain sections of the library will be laid out. That phase should be done by the end of this year, desBordes said.

As the size of the building stands now, it will be about 1,000 square feet bigger than the Hahnville branch and nearly 3,000 square feet smaller than the St. Rose branch.

“The state has standards for how large a library should be based on population,” desBordes said. “They give an essential size and an enhanced size, and we chose the enhanced size.”

The building, which should cost around $1.2 million, will have a similar design and collection inventory as other area libraries and will also have a meeting room. desBordes also plans on having a children’s room at the Paradis branch and more computers than currently reside in the Hahnville and Norco libraries.

“We plan on having six public access computers and two children’s computers that will run children’s programs,” she said.

However, all that could change depending on funding.

If the price of the project is significantly less than what the Library Board expects, a few extra “bells and whistles” could be added to the Paradis branch. If the price exceeds $1.2 million, the Library Board might have to cut back on some of the offerings.

Because the building is new, desBordes hopes that they will be able to expand on services offered at other area libraries.

“This opportunity to build a new building is also an opportunity to try new things,” she said. “I doubt it will be anything really radical, but it should be interesting.”

Back in May, the council authorized the parish Library Board to hire Norman Chenevert & Associates to design a library in Paradis. The School Board also agreed to enter into a cooperative agreement with the council that would give the parish land that formerly housed the old Paradis Library.

View other articles written Jonathan Menard

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