Statement on Site Changes in the Public Library Construction Program

Applicants to the Massachusetts Public Library Construction Program are required to specify the site on which the project will be built. When projects are reviewed the reviewers consider various aspects of the site: space for adequate parking, how pedestrians and vehicles will navigate the site, visibility from streets, integration into the neighborhood, and ownership of the parcel. In short, the review encompasses complete projects including the library building program, the schematic design and interior layout, and the site. In order to be eligible, applications must receive approval from Town Meeting or City Council. The Massachusetts Public Library Construction Program makes no provision for changing a site after the application is filed.

In the past, two site changes have been approved by the Board at the request of the library and municipality. The Lakeville project was permitted to change the location of its new building on a large piece of town owned land when Native American artifacts were discovered on the proposed site. This project was built and is now open. A project in Dighton was permitted the opportunity to change its site when hazardous materials were discovered on the site and a major environmental cleanup was required. Subsequently the town did not build the project.

In order to consider a request for a site change, evidence of factors that are entirely beyond the control of the library, the municipality, project designers and engineers must be presented to the Board. An example might be a change in applicable state law or regulation that prohibits the project from going forward on the site.

In sum, the project as proposed is the project that is reviewed and approved. It is that project including its site that the Board expects the municipality to build.

Adopted November 6, 2008

Page last updated on 07/1/2015