Space for people
The Avon Library has 12.5 visits per capita. Current library standards recommend that libraries with visits per capita over .6 should provide more than minimum seating. On busy days, often our residents wander around looking for an empty chair. Clearly we need more seating. As we have accommodated the demand for library services such as computer workstations and the need for additional book shelves, we have had to eliminate seating.
Space for books
Our current book collection is 79,000, which exceeds our capacity by approximately 7,000 items. While we do not expect the book collection to grow at the same rate as it did in the first twenty years of occupation of this building, our shelving capacity maxed out four years ago. Since 1998, display for non-book formats has been woefully inadequate.
Space for our youth
Presently we have 360 square feet to serve over 1,500 students in grades 6 through 9. The Library can assist these young adults make the transition to adulthood by helping them develop the habit of lifelong learning, and by providing skills for information literacy and the space to study and work on collaborative projects. The Library is a wonderful place to promote the healthy and positive development of our youth and we lack the space to accomplish this goal.
Space for children
To meet residents’ need for children’s services, the space for the children’s book collection, comfortable seating and storytimes must be doubled. Our children’s population is growing and additional space is needed to fulfill our strong commitment to our youngest library users.
Space for technology
We offer computer access to our library patrons now and the workstations are in high demand. Patrons are often forced to wait for a computer. More space would allow us to increase the accessibility of technology to our users.
Space for the Community
Meetings take place in the community room, the story hour room, the craft room and the history room and sometimes all rooms are in use simultaneously. The space in the existing community room isn’t large enough for our popular programs and activities. One quiet study room exists for adults and one for children and yet the number of requests from the public for more quiet areas continues to increase.
Space for Avon’s History
This room is located on the second floor. It is serviced several hours twice a week by volunteers from the Historical Society, but is located too far from the reference desk to be convenient to the library’s staff during the majority of hours that the library is open. Although it serves multiple purposes as a meeting room, boardroom, and local history and genealogy room, it does not fulfill its role sufficiently because of its location. The library addition should contain a room that can be serviced by the reference staff and additional volunteer hours. Also, more space is needed to store the archives properly.
Space for parking
There are not enough parking spaces to accommodate patrons using the library today. Overflow parking sends patrons across the street, which can be dangerous. The current number of spaces is 59. The future need is 129. In addition to library programs, the library hosts meetings by community groups and the town recreation department with attendance of five to fifty people.
The present book drop is not convenient for easy returns of materials because people have to get out of their cars and walk to it in all kinds of weather when the library is closed and they are in a hurry. A new fire-proof book drop should be provided that is near the circulation workspace and can accommodate returns from a car window. It should be open 24/7.
Space for staff and volunteers
The Library staff work areas are overcrowded. Staff members need desk space in order to support all the activities for our patrons. Department heads need office space for private meetings with staff and for more efficient task completion. Volunteers and Friends have two other very small cramped spaces in which to work.
Space for a True Community Resource
Our present and future needs cannot be met in the current building. With the support of the Town and additional property which has been purchased, we have the opportunity to develop a Library facility that will provide the community with many resources for years to come. Avon is a great town and deserves a great library that will meet all of its needs. This building project is part of our commitment to providing that for you.