The $187 million Dayton Metro Library system-wide building project is nearly a third of the way finished with the reopening Monday of the renovated Kettering-Moraine Branch.
The library system will have 17 state-of-the-art facilities, including 11 new buildings and a rebuilt main library at the Downtown Dayton location when the Libraries for a Smarter Future initiative is completed.
When the Kettering-Moraine branch reopens, it will mark the midway point for segment two of the project.
Credit: Robert Calzada
Credit: Robert Calzada
Six libraries have been completed—three renovations and three new buildings— under the four-segment redevelopment plan since the project began in 2013. The entire project is scheduled to be completed in 2019.
Those completed libraries, including Kettering-Moraine, are: Brookville, New Lebanon, Miami Twp., Electra C. Doren and Northwest Dayton branches. Of the remaining 11 projects, eight are new facilities, including Vandalia which is scheduled to open in November and the Main Branch in Downtown Dayton, scheduled to open Spring 2017.
The bulk of new construction in the project will come in segment three with construction scheduled to begin in 2017. The final segment will consist mostly of renovations, according to Jayne Klose, Community Engagement Director for Dayton Metro Library.
The newly-remodeled Kettering-Moraine Branch, a result of $5.8 million devoted from a $187 million voter-approved bond issue in 2012, will provide Kettering residents with “a 21st century library with study rooms, a quiet reading room, larger community room, and enhanced children and teen areas,” Klose said.
A lending program for in-library laptops, iPads and Macintosh computers will also be available to members.
“We anticipate children and families will continue to use the library in a traditional way,” said Diane Farrell, Director of External Relations for Dayton Metro Library. But she acknowledged libraries have a non-traditional component as well.
“Libraries have become dynamic, vibrant spaces. They’re no longer quiet or static,” Farrell continued.
With so many upgrades that promote a different environment, Farrell says the changes will resonate with people of all ages, giving an enhanced “safe space” for all.
“It (the library) encourages out-of-school and after school engagement from our teens. It provides a place for adults to have a meeting space, with some areas accessible even after hours,” Farrell said.
While most area Dayton Metro Library branches will be getting some of the same upgrades, the Kettering-Moraine Branch will include improved natural lighting and and a more level parking lot. The branch has been closed since October 2015.
Kettering resident and Trotwood-Madison High School English teacher Alyse Pennington said she’s excited about the changes coming to her local library.
“I’m very excited for the new library, especially since it’s so close to home. My little brother is a sophomore at Fairmont and I often encourage him to frequent the library for additional resources on projects and leisure reading,” Pennington said.
“Hopefully the new library will help expand the kids’ minds and be another resource to help us keep them focused on school.”
With the Kettering-Moraine branch closed, her brother had to rely on the library at his school, which Pennington said had “limited resources” in comparison to the branch library.
The Kettering-Moraine Branch’s reopening will be held from 3:30 - 6:30 p.m.
Regular operating hours begin Tuesday.
BY THE NUMBERS: Dayton Metro Library building project
$187 million: Cost of the Dayton Metro Library system-wide building project
2: Number of libraries (West Carollton and Wilmington-Stroop) awaiting expansion/renovation
8: Number of new branches that are still under development; four of which have yet to receive designs
17: Total number of libraries being built or renovated
2019: System-wide upgrades expected to be completed
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