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Local News

Tuesday, 29 June, 2010 1:07 AM

Residents welcome new $15-million public library in Novi

PHOTO BY JASON RZUCIDLO / ©AMERICAJR.com

The new Novi Public Library is located at 25255 Ten Mile Road.
by Jason Rzucidlo
americajr@americajr.com

 

NOVI, Mich. -- Over 60 percent of Novi residents voted for it. It took three years to complete. The new Novi Public Library is now open for residents and guests to use. The building features 55,000-square-feet of space and many new amenities that were not previously offered. The new library includes a café, used bookstore, a fireplace with seating and many new computers for use. A new self-checkout option is being offered for the very first time at the library. A full-size Indy race car is on permanent display inside the kids section.

Voters approved a $16 million bond in 2007 for the new library. The entire cost for the project will total about $15 million, with the extra funds used for tearing down the old library and the paving of the parking lot. The parking lot is expected to be finished by Aug. 12. The entire project is expected to be completed on time and about $700,000 to $800,000 under the total budget.

"We're seeing on average 1,800 people in the building everyday," said Novi Public Library Director Julie E. Farkas. "In our old building, it was about 800. We have a lot more spaces that we were able to provide. We have a computer lab, a teen social and study space on our second floor. We tripled the amount of computers in the building. We're pleased that it came under way budget, which has been wonderful as well."

Children of all ages will love the new library with the addition of video games and more computers. There are now 107 computers in the library whereas the former library only had 42. There is also a kids activity room that features tables with action figures and puzzles.

Novi residents Charles and Myrtle Walker donated $1 million to the city for the construction of the new library. Their names are engraved just above the main entrance to the building.

"It's a beautiful facility, we love all of the furniture and the artwork in there," said Laura Walker of Traverse City, who is the daughter-in-law of Charles and Myrtle Walker. "It's a nice place to be. The architecture is so much nicer and the seating and the computers. It's just a really great improvement for the town. They [the city of Novi] were going to renovate. They decided to pass a millage and the people of Novi voted yes. They were able to spark that new building. Their name is actually on the building."

There are six self-service checkout lanes at the new library. Books now come with digital chips to make it possible. The Novi Public Library is a member of The Library Network consortium. Residents from other cities across metro Detroit can checkout books at this library after registering their card in the Novi library database.

Novi residents can use the internet for a period of three hours on computers inside the library. Residents from other cities can also request a guess pass to use the internet for a period of one hour.

Another great addition is the 2,000-square-foot outdoor patio located at the rear of the building. There are tables and chairs with canopies for visitors to enjoy the outdoors. Free wireless internet is offered inside the library, in the patio and in the park next to the library.

"I think it's beautiful, I think it's a great place for people to meet," said Novi resident Mahasti Shahidi. "It's a good cultural place and it's an academic hub for the kids for the high school, who are so close. For the community as a whole, it's a wonderful addition to Novi. It's much larger, it has a lot more resources. I have young kids and I have a high school student so it's better for both age groups. We'll be coming for any and every reason we can possibly find."

A new used bookstore is located on the first floor of the library. It is being staffed by the Friends of the Novi Library.

CNN Chief Medical Correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta spoke during a private grand opening event on Friday, June 25. He grew up in the city and is a Novi High School graduate.

"I think it's really nice, I didn't even notice the outdoor here," said Novi resident Denise Keinath. "You can come out here and eat or read. It's a nice atmosphere and good size library. We go to the library a lot anyway. They have a lot more activity rooms and a nice bookstore."

The new library also features a computer lab, group study rooms and meeting rooms that can be rented out.

Hours of operation for the the Novi Public Library are 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. from Monday through Thursday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Friday and Saturday. The library will also be open from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. on Sundays from September through May.

For more information on the Novi Public Library, visit www.novilibrary.org.

 

PHOTO BY JASON RZUCIDLO / ©AMERICAJR.com

A sculpture outside the library.

 

PHOTO BY JASON RZUCIDLO / ©AMERICAJR.com

A seating area with trash receptacles just outside the main entrance to the building.

 

PHOTO BY JASON RZUCIDLO / ©AMERICAJR.com

Novi Public Library sign along Ten Mile Road.

 

PHOTO BY JASON RZUCIDLO / ©AMERICAJR.com

Another look at the exterior of the new Novi Public Library.

 

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