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Village Vision News

Trustees approve fix for library structural problem

Friday, October 26, 2012

Forsyth Public Library was closed Oct. 22-23 and will close again sometime in November to move books, shelving and furniture within the facility.

The closure is necessary due to discovery of a structural problem that entails a temporary rearrangement of the library collection in several areas, including both the adult and children’s section.

Trustees voted unanimously Oct. 15 to endorse Library Director Rachel Miller’s threefold plan to address the structural problem, which is causing the vibrations in the library floor.

Included was approval to:

  • Hire Architectural Expressions to oversee the project at a cost not to exceed $13,000
  • Secure bids for the remediation plan at a projected cost of $124,600, including contingencies
  • Hire two companies to assist with the relocation of library materials at a cost of $5,000.

Village Administrator Mike Miller said it is anticipated that it will take three months of construction once bids are advertised and approved.

Implementing this temporary change in the floor plan may mean some inconvenience to patrons who will need staff assistance in locating materials. “We can make it work,” said Library Director Miller. “The library staff is happy to help library users in any way needed.”

Library staff has already taken action. “We are moving books within the current shelving to prepare for changes as recommended by Architectural Expressions,” said Miller.

Upon settling in as the new head librarian and after a February review of a 2008 document compiled by a library building consultant who referenced the vibrations, Miller said she brought her concerns to trustees. Approval was given for a structural review by Architectural Expressions.

The review showed approximately 80 percent of the existing library floor does not comply with building code and needs to be reinforced. According to Architectural Expressions, no damage is apparent to the building itself.

Problems with the library floor system date back to 1996 when construction was completed with an addition to the existing library building. Village Attorney Jeff Jurgens advised trustees at their Oct. 1 meeting that the architectural design firm associated with the project went bankrupt a few years ago.

Trustees moved forward with approval to correct the problem after a recommendation from Village Administrator Miller to tap the Village reserves for some, but not all of the unbudgeted costs. The goal is to fix the problem before the Village’s next fiscal year.

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