At the library board meeting Tuesday, September 16, Des Plaines Public Library trustees approved a 2015 budget that funds Phase One of a Master Plan Study trustees have been working on for the past several years.
This decision to make improvements given the changes in technological demands after 14 years is very exciting. It is in direct response to the community's feedback over the last few years. We are very fortunate to be in a position to do this project now and give back to the community in the ways they have requested.
I want to thank the trustees on the Building & Grounds Committee for working so diligently to ensure the board had all the information necessary to make a fully informed decision. I am proud of the Board and the staff of the library continuing to ensure fiscally responsible decisions in lowering the levy and simultaneously be responsive to the needs of the Des Plaines community.
Dr. Gregory Sarlo, Des Plaines Public Library Board President
The Master Plan includes updates to the DPPL's now 14 year old building to meet the changing needs of our Des Plaines community. The Plan was developed with direct input from Des Plaines community members and library users, who expressed the need for:
- Additional space to accommodate the Des Plaines community’s expressed need for digital training and digital literacy
- Additional space for teens to work and collaborate
- Additional youth programming space to support our early literacy initiatives
- Increased amenities including a patron lounge and vending area
- Reorganized staff spaces to streamline and maximize workspaces and staff efficiency
Key elements of the Master Space Plan Study address these needs with the creation of:
- A 4th floor Adult Digital Learning Center that meets patron demand for instruction on databases and library e-materials in a collaborative and spontaneous setting. (Phase 1)
- A 3rd floor digital eBAR allows staff to deliver hands-on technological assistance with a variety of digital devices as well as one-on-one instruction on how to use DPPL materials on those devices. (Phase 1)
- A 3rd floor teen center with expanded work, social and media areas, as well as collaborative work and teen programming spaces. (Phase 2)
- A reorganized, user-friendly, 2nd floor youth computer learning center that accommodates school visits, database training and computer-assisted programming and the transformation of the 2nd floor Poetry Corner into a usable programming space. (Phase 1)
- An expanded 1st floor Quick Picks Service Center increases patron access to popular materials in an easy to browse ‘grab-and-go” setting. (Phase 1)
- Improved 1st floor public amenities, including a vending/lounge area and meeting room technology upgrades. (Phase 1)
The Master Plan will be completed in two phases over separate budget cycles. The total cost estimate for both Phases is $2,154,07. Phase 1, to be completed in 2015 is budgeted at $1,027,664, plus architect and engineering consultant fees. Phase 2, to be completed in 2016 will be budgeted at $1,126,407. This project will be paid for out of the library's existing fund balance and the library's 2015 levy, for the third year in a row, will be reduced by 1.5%.