MURRAY — The Calloway County Library Board of Trustees this week looked at another schematic site plan for a proposed children’s library addition to be added onto the existing library on Main Street.
The plan was a reworking of a proposal made by trustee Winfield Rose during a previous meeting, and featured some tweaks made by Chris Cottongim with the 5253 Design Group out of Louisville. The proposal was made in the hopes of saving costs to temporarily move the library during renovation, as well as limit or eliminate the need for the library to be closed during construction.
The plan would feature the construction of a new children’s library along the north side of the current structure that would later be connected through the current north wall of the building. Cottongim said that he was able to rework the initial plan that was only partially connected to help with the issue of potential staffing.
“There are some good things about what we are trying to do with this,” Cottongim said. “The main thing we are trying to do is save the money from moving the library out during renovation; we are trying to save the money for rent, we are trying to save the money for any renovations of a temporary facility; those are good things.”
Cottongim took some liberties with a rough sketch that had been provided by the board the previous month. The original idea was to have a separate structure to the northwest of the current structure, behind the Higgins House. Cottongim moved the new children’s library further east, and closer to the current structure to allow access to the current building.
This change was also to help address the potential need for staffing, and Cottongim said control was the main focus of the Essential Plus plan a different board had already approved more than a year ago. Cottongim noted that the budget presented for what is known as the Kennedy Option 2 plan as originally proposed came in at an estimated cost of $5.3 million dollars, but was short of the recommended square footage put forth by the Kentucky Department of Libraries and Archives (KDLA).
Cottongim had two variations of a site plan to show the board Tuesday – one that met KDLA standards and another that would eliminate some square footage to keep the project in the $5.3 million ballpark.
“The square footage of this project is the same as the Essential Plus at this time, 28,622 square feet,” Cottongim said. “…we have been able to develop a plan that works a lot like the Essential Plus in the control situation. In a library of this size, we don’t want to create a staffing problem where we have multiple needs for different staffing issues. You have heard me say that about the bank building, and you have heard me say that about a standalone facility.
“We can’t cause ourselves longterm cost overruns or problems due to the need for extra staffing. So we want to try to control the facility from a single point.”
Cottongim said the suggested site plan can be made to meet the same programming expectations of the Essential Plus plan. He said that while the new addition is constructed, the current library could remain in operation, and once it is completed, current staff and materials can be moved into the newly constructed areas while renovations are done to the existing structure.
“We can leave everybody here, save that money on moving and renovation costs,” Cottongim said. “It could be done a lot easier than the Essential Plus plan.”
Cottongim said the plan that meets KDLA standards would cost roughly $6.4 million dollars, for a total square footage of 28,622. The other project presented by Cottongim Tuesday night eliminated some extra spaces in the plan, and left the library with a total of 24,547 square feet – which is below the KDLA standard – at a cost of roughly $5.3 million.
The board thanked Cottongim for his presentation, but made no motion in regards to pursuing the updated plan. Cottongim said he would have more detailed figures to share with the board at a future meeting.
In addition to hearing the report from Cottongim, the board also met in closed session to discuss the potential purchase of property adjacent to the library.