SYCAMORE – The Sycamore Public Library is about to enter the final phase of its major renovations, giving patrons a week to stockpile items before the second floor closes for the rest of September.
The second level, which includes adult fiction and nonfiction, professional resources and DVDs, will be closed from Sept. 10 to Oct. 1 for re-carpeting, painting, window replacements and other improvements.
During that time, public computers will be moved to the meeting room on the first floor along with newspapers and current magazines with limited seating. A limited collection of books and DVDs also will be available for check out.
Before that happens, assistant director Katherine Keyes urged patrons to check out any material they may want next week and ask for an extended due date. She also said residents can use their library cards at other libraries.
“It has been moving quickly,” Keyes said of the renovation. “It’s been so fun to see the reaction from people walking in.”
Keyes said patrons have been impressed with the new circulation desk, now situated right at the entrance as opposed to upstairs, as well as the children’s section that has been divided into an early grade section and an elementary section for a more personalized experience.
A new teen zone also has been created upstairs, and all areas feature brighter colors for a more modern, welcoming appearance, Keyes said.
Once the second floor renovations are complete, the $731,000 project that began in mid-April will be finished. The project was funded through $444,000 in grants, impact fee and reserve revenues and a $478,100 loan that also allowed the library to secure a lower interest rate on some existing debt.
Keyes said an open house celebration is scheduled for Oct. 14 from 1 to 5 p.m. and could include face painting, balloon stations and fun refreshments such as a chocolate fountain. Informal tours also will be provided to show residents areas of the library they normally would not see, such as staff offices.
“Change can be a challenge for some people, but I think everyone has really enjoyed it,” Keyes said. “We’re very happy with everything.”
Some of the changes were overwhelming for staff member Haley Sandin, who has worked at the library for the past five years. But after seeing everything come together and get close to completion, she said the changes are a big improvement.
“I really like it a lot,” she said. “We’ve had a lot of good feedback and I am just looking forward to seeing the finished project.”