Thursday, Dec. 13, 2007 | Thanks for the pizza update on the costs for the downtown main library.
It still makes absolutely no sense to this taxpayer that we should build an iconic downtown library unless we expect tourists to want to throng to it because it is beautiful or architecturally interesting. I believe that is “agendad” wishful thinking. (The agenda is written by those who have been pushing downtown as a destination for many years.) And the argument that every great metropolis worth its salt has a “great” library is balderdash. Better we should have libraries that are easy for residents to get to and easy to use.
I wouldn’t dream of driving, or even taking the bus, downtown to go to the library. Neighborhood libraries are so convenient, the parking is easy and they are not crowded. They can focus on local interests, and it is very fast and easy to request a book be delivered to that branch from a central depository if the local one does not have what one wants.
The sensible and cost-effective answer is to remodel the old downtown library to function as a downtown branch, put some money into a fast, efficient warehousing operation out where land is cheap and service every local branch library from there every day.