Public Library Website


Why is this HAPPENING The library’s elevator is forty years old. The company that originally installed it is no longer in business, and its increasingly frequent breakdowns have become very expensive and time-consuming because parts for an older elevator have to be custom-manufactured.

How will it be fixed ? The elevator will be completely rebuilt in place---without the much more expensive and extensive excavating of a new shaft. All of the mechanical systems that make the elevator work will be replaced with new parts, and even the “cab” itself---walls, floor, and ceiling---will be new. In addition, since the elevator is connected to the fire alarm system of the building, that system will be replaced with up-to-code equipment, as well.

How long will it take ? The project has already been progressing for about eight months, including the bid process for selecting vendors, the project engineering, and gathering materials. Managers for the various components of the project have met to plan the sequence of construction activities.
Once the actual construction starts on September 17, the elevator will be out of service for approximately 7 weeks until the end of October. Final inspections by State and local officials will be needed before the project is finished.

How will this affect library service ? The Library will be open from Noon until 9 p.m. only (no mornings) on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday, September 17, 18, 19 and will be closed all day on Friday, September 20. Workers will be in the building starting at 5 a.m. The change in hours those four days will allow workers to complete the noisiest and most disruptive parts of the project while the building is otherwise empty. We do not anticipate any other changes in hours.

Our two stairways will be available throughout the project. In addition, we hope to have some parking spaces temporarily designated for Library users in the area outside Town Hall so that people who have difficulty using stairs will be able to park closer to the building. At any time during the project, please ask a staff member for help if you are unable to reach the part of the Library you need to use.

Book Sale hours are not expected to change except for the one Tuesday morning we are closed (September 17). Public restrooms on the lower level will remain open unless the specific work being done requires closing off the hallway; upper level restrooms will not be affected by the project. Book drops on both sides of the building will remain open, although access to the “drive up” drop on the Petersen Way side of the building may be intermittently blocked by construction vehicles. Library programs will be planned to minimally inconvenience our patrons.

Anything else ? A number of other maintenance projects are planned for the fall, including work on the Library’s roof. It may be possible to accomplish some of these while the elevator work is being done, which might avoid repeated service interruptions. At times, our parking areas may have to accommodate large vehicles and cars for additional work crews.

Who is paying for this ? The elevator upgrade is being paid for with LoCIP funds---State reimbursement to the Town under the Local Capital Improvement Program. The Library roof work is part of the Town’s own Capital Projects plan. Other activities scheduled during this busy time are part of the regular Operating Budget for the Town.

Is there more information available ? If you have other questions, please call Library Director Mary Etter (860-644-1541)

August 2019