The Clinton Herald, Clinton, Iowa

Local News

April 20, 2013

Committee studying Clinton library's needs

CLINTON — A group of community leaders hopes to create a Clinton Public Library geared to best serve residents while reconciling the century-old Carnegie structure's past with the vision for the future.

The steering committee for the library-needs study met for the the first time Friday to learn what changes need to be made to the facility in order to meet their goals.

"This is the time to dream and look at the next 50 years," library planner George Lawson told the nine-member committee during its initial meeting. "You sort of get the bite of the apple every so often. You get to do something to your public library every 50 years maybe, if you're lucky. So, we're going to want to be strategic in our plans and we have to make it work for the community."

Lawson, along with architect Robert Winters of Gere/Dismer Architects and Lauren Stottler with Paragon Commercial Interiors met with the group to discuss what they have already gathered from talking to staff and looking at the building.

The study is expected to take three months to complete and has been funded by the Clinton County Development Association and the city. Once the study is complete, officials will have a plan for improvements that should be made.

"This is an exciting time for public libraries," Lawson said. "There are so many trends we want to be sure we're in touch with and capitalize in our plans so that we do meet those expectations."

Lawson pointed to several areas the library can improve. He identified technology, community partnering and collaborative spaces among the facility's needs. Officials should look at the library's digital capabilities and offerings as well as the amount of hardware such as computers, laptops and e-readers patrons would use, he said.

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