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Arts & Culture

Eagle River Trustees Hope to Double Library Size

The public will soon have a chance to see the Olson Library Expansion project in Eagle River. 

Trustee Phil Jensen says they've known for a longtime that that they've outgrown the facility. Six years ago they had plans for an upgrade, but the recession halted those plans. Now they've hired Northwoods designer and builder Jeff Visner and they have new plans:

“Doubles the size of the library, from 6,500 feet to about 13,000 square feet. And will provide all the things that we’ve been looking for in the addition: new technology, more space, reading rooms, more room for collections, flexibility of design.”

Jensen says the new building will be energy efficient and have more room in the aisles, along with places to store things. But he says the traditional library is changing.

“The amount of printed material is giving way to a digital format. And the internet is a huge, has a huge impact on libraries, the way people get information – and we will be totally wired for that.”

He says a key aspect will be a community meeting room with space for 100.

Jensen says they've raised $700,000 and have a number of grant applications, including a Community Development Block Grant. He says they need to raise about $1.8 million more.

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