Friday, May 21, 2010

Community Meetings with Library Design team

Come to the Library Community Room on Tuesday, May 25, to see drawings of the proposed library expansion/renovation and give your reactions!    You have a choice of two sessions:

    5:30 - 7 pm

This is a follow-up to the well-attended May 13th community meetings pictured here.    Community input was helpful.   We expect to see further development in the design by May 25.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010


May 20, 5:30pm, Community Room, Library, 335 Maple St, Holyoke.  Brief business meeting to elect new Board and Officers, then Refreshments at 6:00 pm, Program at 6:30pm: 
Come hear author Timothy Black discuss his award-winning book, When a Heart Turns Rock Solid: The Lives of Three Puerto Rican Brothers On and Off the Streets.

Photos taken May 20:   Delicious food provided Rory Casey and Michael Baron

Book-signing after the very moving program.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Future Begins Here 2010

Friends of the Holyoke Public Library participated in the 19th Annual Future Begins Here event at the Holyoke Mall, Sunday, May 2, 2010.

Christine Alger (photo, right)  and many other volunteers assisted at the Silent Auction tables.

THANK YOU to all the people who volunteered their time and/or spent their money at this gala event!

Funds raised by ticket sales, auctions sales, bar sales, balloon sales, and sponsorships help support the Children's Room at the Holyoke Public Library.
Peg McCarthy (left) staffed another table with Silent Auction items.

Rory Casey was Chair of the Library team. Thanks, Rory!
Christine Alger, Peg McCarthy, Karlene Shea, Tim Damon, Rory and Melissa Casey.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Library Bond Authorization: YES!

Library supporters turned out in force last night and the City Council voted 14-1 to approve borrowing for the Library renovation/expansion project.  Hooray!  Thank you all!

Thanks to this YES vote, the project will now roll forward very quickly. COMMUNITY MEETINGS to see preliminary plans have been set for next week, Thursday May 13. (Two Spanish meetings 10am & 4pm; two English 11:30am & 5:30pm at the Library.) The architectural firm from Boston is now hard at work creating drawings and scenarios for public input. At least 3 choices will be on view.

A second day of community meetings (to look at refinements after a preferred plan has been selected) is scheduled for Tuesday May 25.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Library Building Renovation/Expansion Project

The 2009/2010 year has been a very active one!   The Friends group has had representatives attending a wide range of meetings regarding the long-awaited building project.  We have been well represented on the Campaign Working Committee, led by the FDA team hired by HPL Corp to direct the fundraising.   We set up TOURS of the building in January to educate our membership about the conditions of the existing structure (see photo of old stacks, which no longer meet building codes).  We participated in interviews for hiring the Owner's Project Manager (OPM). One of us was then invited to join the Building Committee, and participated in reviewing 14 Design Team proposals, interviewing 6 teams, and recommending an architectural/design team.

See Sandy Ward's online Library Project photo album documenting the library tours and many subsequent meetings.

The Friends group was asked in September 2009 to make a formal pledge to the Library Building Campaign.  We did so, pledging $100,000!   Of this, $26,000 was donated immediately and  another $14,000 promised to be paid before June 2010 -- to be used during this year to offset costs associated with redesign of schematics required by the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners (MBLC).  The remaining $60,000 is to be raised in future years, conditional on City commitment to bonding for the project.

President Tim Damon and Sandy Ward visited many other public libraries in western Mass.  Sandy made several trip to eastern MA libraries as well, focusing particularly on historic buildings with new additions.  We can learn from these examples. See Sandy's "Ideas from elsewhere" photo albums.