Should we throw good money after bad?
Constructed in 1985, the library’s current home – a pole barn-style building designed for a southern climate – has reached a tipping point. The physical and technical requirements required to meet growing community demands are unattainable within the current structure. Any further repair and replacement costs toward this end are unjustifiable.
Our current pole building
Construction methods used for the Interlochen Public Library have compromised its functionality thirty years later.
Areas requiring extensive repair or replacement include the following:
- Septic system
- Heating and cooling
- Exterior and interior lighting
- Water well
A band-aid approach?
Repairs and renovations needed to meet the growing needs of residents are estimated at a minimum of $1.2 million. For IPL to serve its community, accommodate expanding patronage, and enter the modern age of information delivery, the list of renovation “must haves” is extensive and expensive. In spite of some $50,000 in previous renovations, three independent inspections have deemed the building functionally obsolete for its current use.
Still, building repairs would address only some of the library’s challenges which also include the following:
- Limited space offers no privacy and constrains program growth.
- Electrical and mechanical structure is incapable of supporting a modern Wi-Fi system for laptops.
- For at least three months of the year, the door to the women’s bathroom (which houses a frequently over-flowing toilet) will not close due to the weight of ice on the roof.
- Lack of shelving and storage forces the divestment of more than 1,000 titles annually and limits acquisition of new material.