Library Expansion News
Planning for an expansion to the current Jake Epp Library building began several years ago.
There were several key factors and standards for public libraries including:
- The original shelves were filled several years ago and new units have been brought in, taking up space that had been dedicated to reading, studying, displays and lounging areas.
- All shelves are currently "over full" by library standards (there should be 1/3 of each shelf available for future growth and bottom shelves should ideally be left empty because they are a potential hazard for some patrons to reach).
- As shelves have encroached on other areas, the available space for people to use the library's Wi-Fi service has decreased while the demand for Wi-Fi access has increased.
- Public demand for internet and computer access has fast outgrown the number of computer stations available and the existing space does not allow for any additions.
- Community space is consistantly occupied. (The one and only multi-purpose room is busy most week-day evenings and is not large enough to meet demand.)
- The library cannot offer adequate space to community partners like South Eastman English & Literacy Services who would greatly prefer to host their classes at the library.
- Membership and circulation continue to increase. (The Jake Epp Library has the highest per-capita circulation in the province of Manitoba.)
The proposed library expansion will provide new and better amenities to the library including:
- An expansion of 10,000 square feet which will create more shelf space for the ongoing growth of the collection and will allow the library to return to basic shelving standards.
- A reinclusion of reading and study areas that have all but disappeared from the library, allowing patrons who want to enjoy the library space to do so.
- An enlarged and more user friendly space for public access to online resources.
- A larger, redesigned circulation desk and a more efficient staff work space for a more efficient check-in/check-out process and better overall service.
- A youth space that will hold all young adult books, magazines, PlayAways, etc. and provide a safe comfortable and appealling study/reading area.
- A second, larger multi-purpose room with a moveable divider wall. This will allow greater space for children's programming, author readings, literacy classes and all other community meetings.
Jon Sawatzky (Library Board Chair), Carolyn Graham (Assistant Librarian), Loraine Trudeau (Head Librarian), Premier Greg Selinger, Mayor Chris Goertzen
News Release July 22, 2010
PROVINCE SUPPORTS EXPANSION
OF JAKE EPP LIBRARY IN STEINBACH
STEINBACH - Citizens of Steinbach will benefit from an expansion of the Jake Epp Library, supported through the investment of $600,000 in provincial funding, Premier Greg Selinger announced here today.
"Libraries offer opportunities for people to learn, develop and grow," said Selinger. "We are pleased to help Steinbach promote sustainable communities by supporting projects such as this."
The Steinbach library expansion plan includes doubling the square footage to just over 18,000 square feet.
The expanded library will include a large multi-purpose room that can be used by the public or as extension of the children's area, as well as new reading and display areas, new technical support services, additional washrooms and enlarged stack areas.
The announcement is part of a $16.5-million funding commitment under the Building Manitoba Fund for recreation facilities in rural and northern Manitoba.
I would be most content if my children grew up to be the kind of people who think decorating consists mostly of building enough bookshelves.
American author, journalist, and columnist
b. July 8, 1952)