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Library marks 75th anniversary with look at its future

Boulder City homeowners could pay on average less than $50 more a year in property taxes to finance the proposed renovations to the Boulder City Library.

At the library’s 75th anniversary celebration on Friday, April 20, plans to build out part of the basement and renovate the rest of the facility at 701 Adams Blvd. were unveiled to the public. Those plans include more meeting rooms, a cafe, a better circulation area, new patios and a new entrance. In addition, there will be designated areas for the youth and teen departments in the lower level.

According to Library Director Kim Diehm, the cost for the project is more than $10 million.

“The library board will go to the voters in November for approval to increase the property tax rate,” she said. “It’s currently at $0.0850 and would need to rise to $0.1200 to cover the proposed bonds needed for the $10.5 million project. We calculated the $0.0350 increase on a $100,000 home to be an increase of less than $1 a month in property tax.”

Las Vegas architecture firm LGA is designing the renovations and expansion.

The project will allow the facility to grow and continue the “truly, unique, American ideal” that Benjamin Franklin started hundreds of years ago when he came up the idea for a library, according to Jeff Breeden, chairman of the Boulder City Library Board of Trustees. He said Franklin created that ideal by starting the tradition of libraries being places to share ideas, information and literacy.

“I am so excited about what they’ve come up with,” Diehm said. “They’ve taken all our ideas, the public’s, and come up with a beautiful layout.”

“I think they’re really great, and they will really enable us to grow our programs and serve our community,” said Jessica Jones, head of youth services at the library.

According to LGA, approximately 13,500 square feet of space from the basement will be built out, and the rest will be used for storage.

Since January, the library board has solicited public opinion about the expansion. LGA took the public’s suggestions and the library staff’s input and created the renderings.

“I like public libraries. They are socially useful and important to the community. Literacy is central to our society, and libraries are essential to that,” said former Library Director Duncan McCoy, who was unable to attend the celebration but said he is looking forward to the project.

Contact reporter Celia Shortt Goodyear at cgoodyear@bouldercityreview.com or at 702-586-9401. Follow her on Twitter @csgoodyear.

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