DATE: May 16, 2012
Walpole Dedicates New Library
The community of Walpole recently came together to celebrate the dedication of the new Walpole Public Library. The library building project was part of the Massachusetts Public Library Construction Program (MPLCP) in which the community received a $3.9 million state grant from the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners (MBLC). MBLC Commissioner George Comeau, U.S. Congressman Stephen Lynch, State Senator James Timilty, and State Representatives Paul McMurty, John Rogers, and Dan Winslow congratulated Walpole residents on investing in the future of their community.
Chair of the Walpole Library Trustees Maura Rudolph called the library the “heartbeat” of the community and read a letter of congratulations from U. S. Senator Scott Brown. MBLC Commissioner George Comeau, who also serves as the Board’s Liaison to the MPLCP, called the library “one of the finest in the state.” “This library represents the building of minds and the sharing of ideas,” he said.
The first Walpole Public Library was built in 1903 and expanded in 1966 to 18,000 square feet. Over a hundred years later, the new facility offers residents many improvements. The 34,925 square foot building features a main-floor children’s room, a large multipurpose room, expanded staff work spaces and a café-style seating area. Second floor features include a conference room, reference services and both quiet and group study spaces. The new library also provides public Internet access terminals and Wifi access throughout the building. Municipal support combined with a successful capital campaign and a state grant from the MBLC provided the funds for this $12 million project.
The library is set to attain silver LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certification, making it eligible to receive a Green Library Incentive of $194,809 from the MBLC. The Green Library Incentive, created by the MBLC in 2008, encourages the recipients of the MPLCP provisional construction grants to incorporate green or sustainable elements into their building projects. Walpole Public Library is the first LEED certified building in the town.
For photos from the dedication please see: http://www.flickr.com/photos/28109221@N08/sets/72157629744046054/detail/
MPLCP was first funded by a state bond authorization in 1987. Since then the MPLCP has helped build 51 new library buildings and 126 addition/renovation or conversion projects. The MPLCP also awards planning and design grants to support public libraries as they prepare to apply for a construction grant. For more information about the program, please visit the Board’s website 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.