The new Wilmington-Stroop Branch Library is taking shape at the corner of Stroop and Wilmington in Kettering. The new library will be 51 percent larger than the old branch and is expected to open in spring 2019. TY GREENLEES / STAFF
Photo: Ty Greenlees
Photo: Ty Greenlees

Bigger Kettering library targets spring 2019 opening

The project, one of 16 facilities that are in the overall library plan, is part of a Wilmington Pike corridor is growing with new and vibrant business development as the city has invested millions of dollars to infrastructure improvements in this area.

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According to library officials, some of the renovation highlights include: Improved access on Wilmington Pike, a larger meeting room accessible to the community outside of library operating hours, dedicated teen space, larger children’s area, enclosed quiet reading room with a fireplace, more computers, an outdoor reading terrace and four group study rooms.

Dayton Metro Library’s Branch Manager Mike Hensel said all of the renovation is part of the Libraries for a Smarter Future Facilities Plan. The plan involves rebuilding and expanding the Main Library in downtown Dayton, building 11 new branches in Brookville, East Dayton/Riverside, Huber Heights, Miamisburg, New Lebanon, Northmont, Northwest Dayton, Southeast Dayton, Trotwood, Vandalia, and West Dayton.

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It also will expand and renovate five branches: Electra C. Doren, Kettering-Moraine, Miami Township, West Carrollton, and Wilmington-Stroop. The plan calls to move backroom functions in the branches to an operations center in a renovated historic building.

The new Wilmington-Stroop Branch Library is expected to open in 2019.

“We want to thank our community members for their wonderful patronage at the Wilmington-Stroop Branch Library and we look forward to joining them on opening day for the new facility,” Hensel said.

The $187 million bond issue passed in November 2012 helped the library move along with the facilities plan. The 26-year bond issue will cost the owner of a $100,000 home about $48 annually.

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The process to construct a facilities plan started in 2007, when the library reached out to users to determine how well services met their needs.

Surveys and meetings with library patrons, residents and community leaders determined “what libraries can and should be.”

The feedback from the surveys and meetings revealed that residents wanted the Dayton Metro Library to continue its traditional core services of providing books, movies, music, and research, according to library officials.

But it was also clearly stated from the surveys that patrons wanted the library to increase access to technology, to expand educational activities for all ages, and to strengthen its role as a community center.

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The Wilmington-Stroop Branch Library and other facilities are being modernized to with up-to-date technology that will enable them to operate more cost effectively, while adding more public space according to library officials.

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