With the passing of a $21.8 million building bond referendum Tuesday, Geneva library officials say construction of a new library on the former Sixth Street School site could start in the spring of 2018, with a prospective opening date in mid-year 2019.
Geneva approved the referendum by a margin of 89 votes — 3,852 to 3,763, according to unofficial totals.
“We would like to thank the voters of the Geneva Public Library District for sharing our vision for the Geneva Public Library and for making this investment for the future,” Library Board President Robert Shiffler said in a Wednesday (April 5, 2017) news release.
The successful referendum allows the board to move forward with plans for the new, 57,000-square-foot facility that will offer community members a library with space for additional technology, expanded collections, more programs, on-site parking, drive-up convenience and other resources and services, library officials said.
The estimated real estate tax increase for a home with a market value of $300,000 is $98 to $99 per year, the library said in an earlier release.
Architectural firm StudioGC will begin work on the building’s design for the board to review and share with the public through community forums at a later date. Then the plans will be submitted to the appropriate city agencies for review, including the Historic Preservation Commission, the Plan Commission and Geneva City Council.
The process of finding a new space for a downtown Geneva library began more than two years ago when the board began to review how the library could best serve the community. The new library will be located at 210 S. Sixth St., the former location of the Kane County Regional Office of Education and, prior to that, Sixth Street School.
Library officials said a new library is needed because the present library site on Second Street is landlocked. In addition, contemporary libraries meet community needs by offering resources like drive-up convenience, 3-D printing services, craft rooms, equipment checkout, early literacy play areas, and more, which cannot be provided at the current location.
For updates and additional information, visit www.gpld.org/pressroom. Submit questions to Board@gpld.org.
SOURCE: Geneva Public Library news release