Steven Buras, Director of the Plymouth Public Library appeared before the Marshall County Council this week requesting approval of additional appropriations for a major renovation project.

Buras indicated that most of the renovation stems from the structural need to address roof problems, skylights and issues with the HVAC systems but the project is an entire library building reno.   He noted that the board wanted to create a forward-thinking library with improved technology and program offerings. 

The last major renovation of the Plymouth Library was 21 years ago.  Buras said former directors Susie Reinholt and Heather Barron had been working on the renovation project for some time.  He noted that the library board has been saving money for many years in preparation for this renovation project.

The renovation is estimated to cost $4.9 million and the library has the funds on hand to complete the project.  The request from the Plymouth Public Library Board was to appropriate $2,008,872.54 in the library’s General Fund; $526,504.85 in the Library Improvement Reserve fund and $2,364,622.61 from their Rainy Day Fund.

Renovations will begin this fall in October or November.  The project expected to take 10 to 12 months to complete.  When asked it the library would remain open during renovations, Buras said the project will be in two phases and there may be some total closures but they will try to minimize them.  They will close a few days before the start of the renovation, 2 or 3 days in the middle of the project and maybe a week or so post renovations to get it all set up.  The director said they would still provide services throughout the time even if they are closed with curbside pick-up. 

Asking about the “forward-thinking” for the renovations Buras indicated they will be adding a full kitchen because they work with the Neighborhood Center and Purdue Extension to provide teaching opportunities, and crafting.  They will have a recording studio at some point in the future, a green-screen room and a potential woodworking shop in the basement.

The Marshall County Council voted 5 to 2 in favor of the additional appropriations.   Councilmen Tim Harman and Jesse Bohannon voted against.  Councilmembers Jim Masterson, Heath Thornton, Mandy Campbell, Jon VanVactor, and Steve Harper voted approval.