JMRL Requests $21M for Restoration

The Jefferson Madison Regional Library is asking for $21M to restore the Central Library, Seth Rosen reports in today’s Daily Progress, as the building’s infrastructure crumbles around them. It’s housed in a beautiful 104-year-old building (the old post office) and while the structure is fine, some of its components (plumbing, wiring, HVAC, carpeting, etc.) are badly in need of replacement. The hope is to expand the area that’s used to serve the public, better suiting the interests of modern library visitors. The county has earmarked $10.5M in its 2013 capital improvement budget, though that’s not finalized, but apparently the city hasn’t moved on the need just yet. The work isn’t due to start until 2014.

6 thoughts on “JMRL Requests $21M for Restoration”

  1. Disclosure: I was appointed by City Council to represent Charlottesville on the JMRL Board of Trustees back in 2002, which I did for only a year before I moved to Blacksburg to attend Virginia Tech. But as a result I know how much that this is needed. Investing in infrastructure is just one of those things that a city’s got to do.

  2. I’ve always been shocked that a community such as Charlottesville does not have a nicer library system. I mean, it’s functional, but not befitting our book lovin’ area.
    Shoot, DVDs are just now starting to trickle in for checkout.

  3. The collection is abysmal. Am I the only one whose requests for new books are often denied due to “lack of funds”? And yet the library seems to have endless funds for Sesame Street books. It’s too bad that the library has to increase circulation numbers in order to get more funding. They can’t seem to increase circulation numbers without buying more and more crummy books and DVDs. And yes, I’ve tried ILL, but the library policy won’t let me request a book until it’s been out for a year.

  4. 2014? That was my reaction too. The building will have fallen apart even more by then.
    Its another example of how the city has let existing facilities and infrastructure deteriorate while yet finding money to spend on unnecessary,flashy projects like the transit center.
    I too have questioned some of the library’s choices in collection development. Pop music CDs(which often disappear )? Multiple copies of Danielle Steele bestsellers but which probably few will read 10 years for now? Yet the selection of classic literature and nonfiction leaves much to be desired.If you need a scholarly work you often end up going to Alderman at UVa.By the way city and county residents caan get a “Cardholder” card that allows them to check out books from UVa libraries,in case people are not aware of this alternative to ILL.

  5. One more thing that drives me nuts about the system: the Internet speeds on the public terminals are dial-up slow. Not a huge deal for most, but as someone who lives out in the country with dial-up and occasionally needs to make use of a connection with some speed to it, the library never ceases to frustrate.

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