As a lifelong resident of the community and an employee of the Grosse Pointe Public Library, I would like to share a few thoughts.
When I started coming to the Woods Branch Library as a child, the building sufficiently held the materials that we all needed and wanted at that time Ñ books. The 5,000 square-foot facility was intended to house 25,000 items. Today it holds about twice that number.
Unfortunately there are more than books that fit neatly on shelf after shelf. The computers we all use and cannot live without take up large amounts of space. Our VHS and DVD collections continue to grow.
I believe that some library patrons don't realize there are books available on CD, CD-roms and many other items because we have no suitable way to feature them to the public.
Story times are cramped. The film festivals for children put the juvenile room out of commission once the lights are off. I think our patrons want and deserve much more.
I had the chance to visit many other libraries while serving on the building committee that was put together to plan and research this new facility. Most libraries were in communities not unlike our own. You don't realize, until you do this, how outdated we really are.
The wonderful thing I did see, however, was that the quality and quantity of our collections far surpass most. We simply have nowhere to display it.
Often I hear new residents who come from areas all over the United States say that we have wonderful choices and large quantities of materials. We just need storage and room for the public to utilize everything.
The architects of Fanning Howie have provided a way for us to accomplish just that. The new building is beautiful. I don't know exactly what the future will bring, but I do know it will require space.