Whittier scraps library plans

first_imgWHITTIER – Whittier might be the biggest loser of Tuesday’s defeat of a $600 million state library bond. Now, city officials say, it’s back to the drawing board for their plans for a new Whittier library. Licking their wounds, officials Wednesday said plans to build a new library are pretty much dead. They now must look for other means to fund a possible renovation of the existing facility. “Now we’ll have to meet the library’s need without having to construct a new building,” City Manager Steve Helvey said. “We’ll have to start to get in full gear for modernization of the existing central library.” Remodeling the existing central library is another option, Helvey said, but the city would “probably have to hire an interior designer who can find out what can be done.” An expansion beyond its 38,000 square feet would be problematic, he added, since any space adjacent to the library will be needed for a new police station. Should the city decide to remodel the interior, officials would need to either close the library while the work is going on, or leave it open during the renovation. If they closed the library, officials would have to look for another site to serve as a temporary library while the work is done, Helvey said. [email protected] (562) 698-0955, Ext. 3022160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MORE11 theater productions to see in Southern California this week, Dec. 27-Jan. 2Had voters approved Proposition 81, Whittier would have received about $19.3 million from the bond issue. Officials had hoped to use that money to build a new, 71,000-square-foot facility at nearly double the size of the current library on Mar Vista Street. The new facility would have been built where an Alpha Beta market once stood in Uptown Whittier. That property is now owned by the city. Whittier officials preferred constructing a new library, saying the existing library has outgrown its capacity after adding several new services since it was built in 1957. Mayor Cathy Warner said the council needs to study all options, including “the possibility of remodeling the current library, expanding the library in east Whittier, and the disposition of the Alpha Beta property.” Plans are under way to hire an architect to study a possible expansion of the Whittwood branch library by another 5,000 to 8,000 square feet. The city has a $200,000 grant to pay for that study. last_img

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