Cover photo: This artist’s rendering depicts what the renovated and expanded Grandview Branch of Mid-Continent Public Library at 12930 Booth Lane is expected to look like when it reopens as scheduled in late spring of 2021.

Grandview library undergoes renovation

By John Sharp

Southland library patrons regained the use of public computers and copying, faxing and printing services when Mid-Continent Public Library (MCPL) branches reopened to the public for limited services on June 16. But Grandview patrons  temporarily lost the use of the Grandview branch, 12930 Booth Lane, on Friday, July 3, when it closed for major renovation and expansion.

The Grandview Branch will be expanded by nearly 4,400 square feet to include a new community programming room, three small collaboration rooms and a dedicated children’s area, bringing its total size to over 17,000 square feet.  It is scheduled to reopen in late spring 2021.

Renovations at the Branch will include new carpeting. ceilings, display cases, lighting and windows, as well as improved Wi-Fi coverage.  The facility will be painted and automatic entrance doors will be installed, along with new entranceways and native landscaping.  The parking lot also will be repaired.

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“We’re excited for these upgrades and believe they will prove to be an incredible asset to our community,” said Ashley Durkee, Grandview Branch manager. 

The Branch improvements are part of MCPL’s overall capital improvements plan to renovate all existing branches and construct two additional branches in areas of population growth made possible by an increase in MCPL’s property tax levy approved by district voters in November 2016 which also has allowed the library to expand its hours, enhance its services, augment early literacy efforts and buy more materials.

MCPL’s Red Bridge Branch reopened in September 2019 in a new and 2,300 square feet larger facility in Red Bridge Shopping Center with much improved access and visibility from Red Bridge Rd. compared to its previous location in the shopping center.  Renovation of the Blue Ridge Branch, 9253 Blue Ridge Blvd., is expected to begin in late 2020.

Grandview Branch customers were asked to check out any items they had been notified were available for curbside pickup before 5 p.m. July 3.  Holds that were not picked up were transferred to the Red Bridge Branch.  Returns can be taken to any branch not closed for renovation.

At branches not closed for renovation, the first hour of limited in-branch services are reserved for customers 60 and over or who are otherwise particularly vulnerable to contracting COVID-19.  The branches close an hour earlier than normal to allow for additional sanitizing, and surfaces touched by multiple people are sanitized throughout the day. 

The public computers are spaced to allow adequate social distancing, and customers may only use them for up to 60 minutes and may only remain in the branches for up to 90 minutes.  Returns must continue to be placed in outdoor book drops.  Returned items are quarantined for at least 72 hours before being checked back into the branch collections.

Curbside pickup for items placed on hold is still available.

In-branch services not available include browsing the book shelves, using children’s computers, attending in-person library events and using meeting rooms.  A date has not yet been set for when these services will be resumed.