The Carlisle Mosquito Online

Friday, July 3, 2009

Gleason Library restoration plans move forward

The Gleason Library renovation project is almost ready to solicit construction bids, according to Gleason Library Trustee Chair Priscilla Stevens. May Town Meeting approved the use of $775,000 in Community Preservation Act funds to repair water damage to the building exterior, including the foundation, brick façade, windows and slate roof. It is expected that the project bid documents will be reviewed by Town Counsel and finalized, and the request for proposals advertised by mid-July, with a site walk for prospective bidders to be held at 10 a.m. on July 22. Bids for the masonry and roofing work will be due at the end of July, while remaining project bids will be due in mid-August. The schedule calls for a construction firm to be hired and work to begin by mid-September. It is anticipated that it will take roughly three months to complete the work.

Sandy Dollins (center) was one of many who left Saturday’s used book sale with an armful of treasure. The Friends of Gleason Library raised a total of $4,950 during this year’s sale. (Photo by Dave Ives)

Abutters will be notified that during construction workers will be on site between the hours of 7 a.m. and 5 p.m. Temporary signs will redirect library traffic and parking as needed and Historical Commission approval will be sought for plans to re-grade the ground along the front of the building to slope away from the foundation.

The Building Restoration Committee is seeking volunteers for the position of project representative. According to Stevens, the volunteer will be asked to help library trustees “keep paperwork current, as well as check to be sure work is being completed correctly and on schedule and relay any concerns to the correct parties.” Architects Lerner, Ladds and Bartels will be overseeing the project.

Operating budget

Library Director Angela Mollet learned recently and notified the trustees that 11 out of 17 employees will receive longevity raises under the town’s wage classification system at an unforeseen additional cost totaling about $5,000 during FY10. The total library budget is $497,110.

Summer at the library

The children’s summer reading program, Starship Adventure, began on June 22 and will run through July. A highlight of the program will be a moon rock on display on July 13. In addition, Dave Reed, a Carlisle resident who worked as a NASA trajectory specialist on the Apollo program, will be available to answer questions.

Gleason’s teen librarian, Erica Wing, is leaving July 31 because she and her husband are moving to New York. The open position has been advertised and the library is in the process of receiving applications.

Usage trends

The first five months of 2009 saw a library circulation of 54,882 items, slightly down from last year’s circulation of 56,940 for the same time period. Stevens also said that this spring the librarians have noticed an increase in the number of people in the library at any given time. One explanation that might reconcile both observations would be if residents were checking out fewer books, but spending more time at the library reading periodicals or using the computers.

During 2008 the library had a total circulation of 134,121 items and collected $12,405 in fines. ∆

© 2009 The Carlisle Mosquito