DATE: February 22, 2012
Foxborough Breaks Ground
On January 28th, one hundred and forty one years after Foxborough opened its public library, community members gathered to celebrate the groundbreaking of the project to expand and renovate the Boyden Public Library.
The project is made possible, in part, with funding from the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners (MBLC) which awarded Foxborough a $3,461,606 grant as part of the Massachusetts Pubic Library Construction Program.
MBLC Chair Katherine Dibble and Commissioner George Comeau joined the celebration. In his address, Commissioner Comeau congratulated the community. “This project not only symbolizes the strength of your community, but it represents your commitment to yourselves and future generations to provide a space where people come together, individuals are inspired and creativity flourishes,” he said.
The ceremony highlighted the cooperative community spirit among library staff, residents, local leaders and state officials that has enabled the project to move forward. “It’s been a long, interesting journey,” said Jeff Lovely, Chair of the Boyden Library Board of Trustees, referring to nearly a decade of planning that went into the project. “It wouldn’t have been possible without the people of Foxborough who supported this good project even in these tough times.” He also recognized the many individuals who have contributed to the project’s success especially the Boyden Library staff and Director Jerry Cirillo. “They go the extra mile and never give up,' he said.
The current 20,833 square-foot building, built in 1968 to replace the original 1871 building, has been home to the library for over 43 years and is serving a considerably larger population with an ever-increasing array of collections, programs, and services.
The project will increase the library’s size from 20,833 to 35,600 gross square feet and is designed to be able to serve a 2025 estimated population of 19,000. The new library will have an enlarged children’s room, dedicated space for teenagers, an increased space for collections, improved meeting room facilities, space for group study and it will be fully accessible, meeting Americans with Disability Act mandates. The addition, designed to compliment the current 1960s contemporary style buildling, will stand over an existing parking lot with parking underneath. It is estimated that the project will be complete in April 2013.
The project is being built to comply with U.S. Green Building Councils LEED standards and may qualify for an MPLCP Green Library Incentive of $173,080 from the MBLC.
Visits to the Commonwealth's public libraries have seen a steady increase in the past decade with 34 million residents visiting their public library last year alone. This represents a 50% increase over the number of visits in FY2000. Many public libraries, some built over 100 years ago, struggle to meet the growing demand for library services in buildings that were built to serve much smaller local populations. Since 1987 the MPLCP has worked with local communities to assist them in building, renovating, or expanding their local library so that it can meet residents' needs well into the future.
There are currently nine library construction projects being built in the Commonwealth with assistance from the MBLC’s Massachusetts Public Library Construction Program. Funding for these MPLCP projects was authorized by Governor Deval Patrick and the Legislature in the General Governmental Needs Bond Bill, signed by the Governor on August 11, 2008. For more information please see http://mblc.state.ma.us/grants/construction/index.php
The Board of Library Commissioners (mass.gov/mblc) is the agency of state government with the statutory authority and responsibility to organize, develop, coordinate and improve library services throughout the Commonwealth. The Board advises municipalities and library trustees on the operation and maintenance of public libraries, including construction and renovation. It administers state and federal grant programs for libraries and promotes cooperation among all types of libraries through regional library systems and automated resource sharing. It also works to ensure that all residents of the Commonwealth, regardless of their geographic location, social or economic status, age, level of physical or intellectual ability or cultural background, have access to essential new electronic information technologies and significant electronic databases.