NEIGHBORHOOD NOTES | Roosevelt Library to close Feb. 11 for 1.5 years


Roosevelt Library (4026 28th Ave. S., Minneapolis) will close on Feb. 11 at 6 p.m. for renovations. The library won’t reopen until the summer of 2013.

The biggest change to the existing building will be the addition of a 500-square-foot multi-purpose room onto the rear of the facility.

The cost of the project is $ 3,200,000. Funding for the renovation is provided by the city of Minneapolis bond proceeds from the city-wide 2000 library referendum.

According to library representatives, patrons can look forward to a renovated library with more public computers and wireless access, including mobile laptops;  flexible, appealing spaces with comfortable seating to meet changing community needs;  a teen area that accommodates out-of-school use;  and a refreshed collection with more books, DVDs, and CDs. There will also be outdoor public spaces for reading and gathering, plus increased operational efficiencies with one customer service point, improved public restrooms, and an accessible entry.

Hennepin County Commissioner Peter McLaughlin commented, “The architect, community, and staff did a great job.  The new Roosevelt Library will strike a balance between retaining the historic nature of the building and creating a structure that incorporates modern amenities.”

The following Key Design Ideas/Concepts were developed based on community input:
• Open sight lines, open library layout
• Cozy, intimate and warm place
• Flexible multi-purpose gathering space
• Natural light – quality of light from multiple sources
• Exterior reading spaces
• Family-friendly place

The goals of the renovation and expansion project are as follows:
• Renovate the building’s envelope (façade and roof assemblies).
• Provide new building mechanical, electrical and technology infrastructure.
• Make the facility accessible.
• Provide a multi-purpose community gathering space for additional
• Create exterior public spaces for reading and activities.
• Improve staff work areas.

In addition to the work listed above, the project must incorporate the following efforts:
• Abatement and removal of existing hazardous materials
• Renovation and expansion must adhere to Historic Preservation Center standards.
• Provide a complete fire protection system – an additional waterline required.
• Full replacement of existing sewer line.

• The existing library building was constructed in 1927 and is a 4,320 SF (footprint) single-story building, with a small basement utility space.
• The building was designed by Minneapolis architect, Jerome Paul Jackson as a community library that would serve the adjacent Roosevelt High School and Roosevelt neighborhood.
• The building was placed on the National Historic Register in May 2000 and has been designated a Building of Cultural Significance by the city of Minneapolis through its Historic Preservation Commission.

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