Big changes planned for NW Albany library

Big changes planned for NW Albany library
Renovations should begin in first quarter 2018. (Source: WALB)
An activity center will be added, along with other updates in the children's section. (Source: WALB)
An activity center will be added, along with other updates in the children's section. (Source: WALB)
A new event space will be in space currently used as a county warehouse. (Source: WALB)
A new event space will be in space currently used as a county warehouse. (Source: WALB)

ALBANY, GA (WALB) - The highly anticipated renovation of one of Albany's busiest libraries will likely start in the first quarter of 2018.

The children's section at the Northwest Branch will be updated and an activity room will be added.

Several interior walls throughout the building will be removed, improving the overall flow of the library, which was originally built as a furniture store.

And the county warehouse located in the far back of the building will become an event space.

Frequent Northwest Branch visitor, Bruce Gunnels, described the library as an important asset for the community.

"It gives the public the opportunity to have access to all of these periodicals and all of these wonderful books that wouldn't otherwise be available to them," said Gunnels.

There are also plans for the parking lot to expand along the southeast end, extending to the new event center and behind the building.

Bids are expected to begin in February.

Once a builder is selected, the entire project will take an estimated six to eight months to complete.

The renovation costs $2 million, paid for with a state outlay grant.

The additional parking lot and portico, if approved by county commissioners, will cost about $450,000 in reallocated SPLOST money.

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