Monday, July 21, 2008

The Library Question

click to enlarge
A close inspection of the proposed new road alignments around Merriweather Post Pavilion shown in this display at the Vision in View exhibit, reveals that the current Central Library in Town Center is in the path of progress. If you look closely at the circled area of the picture above you can see a faint outline of the existing building.

In other words, the current building does not fit into the draft Master Plan.

I don’t have a problem with this as long as the library gets a new (perhaps bigger and better?) building in Town Center in the deal. The question is what is the deal?


Dave W said...

Great catch wordbones. After seeing your post, I decided to stop by the display and look for myself and you are right, the library has vanished. In fact, it looks like they took curve of LPP where South Entrance Road comes inand reconfigured it completely where LPP now takes a sharp right turn.

I did not make every presentation GGP put on, but I did hit the major ones and I can't remember it ever being brought up that the library was going to moved and it's building demolished. Maybe I missed it in their presentations.

Dinosaur Mom said...

Hey, good catch. I'm with you that a new and improved library would be no bad thing, but it might have been worth mentioning at some point in the sales pitch.

B. Santos said...

I first noticed the absence of the current library (which is built on open space) during the April 28, 2008 presentation. During that presentation, GGP mentioned the possibility of putting a new library in Symphony Woods and modeled after a library in Cerritos, California.

It appears that CA's Planning and Strategy Committee has not taken kindly to GGP's suggestions. The full board will vote on it on Thursday.

Anonymous said...

Well worth mentioning. I am surprised you're only catching this now. This shouldn't require close inspection to find. It's a significant and costly detail. It was also mentioned at the cultural presentation among many other details in early May.

Anyway, that proposed change and some other significant proposed changes have been readily available for those paying attention to these details for quite some time now. The problem is the most publicized illustrations have, for lack of a better word, accentuated aspects of the plan that do not provide a full compendium of the proposal's many significant impacts.

A new library could costs tens of millions of dollars. That's money that should be spread more equitably in the County to those communities that don't have libraries, not used to demolish and rebuild an existing one just to build a road.

Plus, the proposal to clear a portion of Symphony Woods to place the replacement library there instead is to me a misuse of what's supposed to be park woodlands. (And librarians shushing a much more adjacent day long Warped Tour concert just doesn't seem like it's going to work well either.)

Further, I expect some details have yet to be presented and will only gain public view upon the official submittal for a zoning change.

And still other details of the proposal's impacts won't even be presented with the submittal.

Will more overhead power lines need to be stretched across Town Center and other parts of Columbia to power all of this?

Will forest need to be cleared to expand power distribution?

Freemarket said...

I think it's clear that Ken Ulman has been reading my blog and has decided to eliminate all libraries from the county. :-)

Mike Milligan said...

I had given the plan a cursory look and wondered where the Central Branch was. Now that I know, I am OUTRAGED! It is a valuable community resource and must be retained. To borrow a phrase, "You can have my library when you pry it from my cold dead hands."

On the other hand, if GGP wishes to build a replacement in the same area and give it to the county BEFORE THE CURRENT ONE IS DEMOLISHED, I won't object.