Seminole Heights Library Makeover: What Do You Think?

The unveiling of a new $6.9 million design has people talking about the Seminole Heights Branch Library and what it has to offer.

A recent Patch story about the unveiling of a new $6.9 million design for the Seminole Heights Branch Library has sparked some debate among our readers and Facebook fans.

"Looks wonderful ... but ... Library? What for? Kinda pricey for a dying breed utility?" wrote Charlie McElman on the Seminole Heights Patch Facebook page on Wednesday.

That prompted Rebecca Reuben to respond by writing, "This is exactly the place we need to be putting money instead of other more wasteful projects. This library has been a great resource for the community my entire life and is probably one of the most used libraries around. Nice to see it's finally getting some much deserved attention."

Ingrid Jacoba listed all the benefits the library offers, especially in a rough economy.

"Free internet access, free movies, books on cd/tape, books, newspapers magazines ... most things that people have trimmed from their household budgets..." she wrote. "It's also a safe haven for kids to study."

And reader Christie Grimaldi had a suggestion for the new design.

"It should have a wrap around porch, at least on the top floor," Grimaldi wrote, "so, readers can have a nice sit outside, while enjoying a book."

So we want to know: What do you think?

Does the library still serve a purpose in today's world?

Do you take advantage of what the library offers?

Would the money for the Seminole Heights Branch Library redesign be better spent elsewhere?

Will the new design improvements make you more likely to visit the library?

Post a comment below and let's keep the conversation going.

Kay February 23, 2012 at 01:04 PM
The county and city don't have the money to keep the library open for normal hours. They don't have the security to handle the after school “problem cases” at that branch (don't go there between 3-5 on a week day! More cussing, screaming, loud music and fights) and the check out rates are very low. Why in the world are they going to spend money they don't have on a new building? It is fine the way it is! Better security and better hours would be great but more debt?
Rebecca February 23, 2012 at 03:48 PM
I'm not sure how many hours Kay expects a library to be open, but I think that until 9:00 p.m. two nights a week, until 6:00 p.m. the others and most of the day Saturday is quite sufficient for something that is free to the community. Their security does a fine job and while yes, there are kids you just with would go home and yes, most kids these days have filthy mouths, they are not cranking up loud music or getting into fights. Kay is just playing into the stereotyping of what people expect would be going on in that area. I believe her fact about the checkout rates to be inaccurate. She has obviously never seen the massive amounts of books, books on tape and DVDs that are on the go-back racks. They will often solicit volunteer help on Facebook when the amounts are high at times. This library is not fine the way it is. For the volume of users it is way too small. It gets too loud in there because there is no space for small groups to sit and have quiet conversation or read. I suggest Kay try volunteering at this branch and then ask herself after putting back all the massive amounts of returned materials if she thinks it's a low number.
Megan February 23, 2012 at 05:22 PM
"Does the library still serve a purpose in today's world?" What an inane, offensive question. Libraries are vital to a strong community. In addition to providing free books, they also provide children's programs, community spaces, computers, internet access, and a wide variety of online materials for both pleasure reading and research. Libraries are more important than ever.
Sheryl February 24, 2012 at 10:03 PM
With the 4 schools that use this so close by, (walking distance) the volume going in and out of books, ect...is very large, in fact I currently have 15 books at home, 1 dvd and several more on hold. So just my family alone is well over 50 plus books a month. Rebecca your comments are spot on, Kay needs to make sure she knows what she is talking about before speaking.
Sheryl February 24, 2012 at 10:05 PM
Libraries are important to our past, present and future, we are looking forward to the new library. For those who don't want to see the money spent for improvement then don't go. And it will make the neighborhood even more special than it already is.


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