New library build to start at Scarborough Civic Centre by 2012

Residents got their first look at the design of a new library planned for Scarborough Centre.

The Toronto Public Library (TPL) plans to start building a 15,000-square-foot library branch south of the Scarborough Civic Centre by 2012 with the expected completion date in 2014.

Residents were invited to share opinions on the design at a meeting held on Feb. 17 in the civic centre.

“The library’s designs have been at review panels,” said Joe Nanos, the centre’s community planning manager. “The construction projects are to alleviate the lack of services in an area where a lot of residences and condominiums have been built.”

Expected to be open on weekends and evenings, Nanos said the library will make the area livelier with students gathering at the library to do research.

TPL proposed that the Scarborough Centre library branch be located at 150 Borough Dr. in January 2009. Now the library will be constructed on city-owned land, with a capital of $200,000 to be taken from the city’s budget.

“Having a library is always a good thing,” said Lourdes David, a Scarborough Centre resident who works full-time for Smoke’s Poutinerie downtown. “I am all up for community access.”

A frequent library visitor, David said she feels there are more libraries in Scarborough than downtown, but she said there are a few areas that all public libraries can improve in.

“I would like to see bigger and more comfortable study spaces,” she said. “I always find really old books that are falling apart and have yellowing pages at public libraries.”

The new library will contain a collection of 50,000 items and provide bookable meeting rooms, quiet study spaces and designated zones for adults, teens and children.

Also included in the design are an area for public art display, a café, free access to high-speed wireless internet and an outdoor reading garden.

“A new library would be good for kids and students,” retiree Sam Cuadacino said. “For sure a library needs a lot of money for construction and I feel that $200,000 from city’s budget might not be enough to complete the whole project.”

Plans for the library also include a pedestrian link from Borough Drive to Albert Campbell Square and connections to Ellesmere Road, as well as integration with a new underground parking garage to be built and operated by the Toronto Parking Authority.

The new library would be adjacent to a large white wall on the southeast side of the civic centre, which may be used as a screen for projecting artwork or movies.

About this article

By: Janice Yeung
Posted: Mar 10 2011 4:14 pm
Filed under: News