Library Renovation and Closure Information

Library Renovation and COVID-19 Update:  August 20, 2020

We're starting curbside services on Monday, August 31. It's a week later than we originally planned because we had some significant unforeseen delays with our data lines, but we are working to get them fixed! Keep an eye out for more information!

Your materials are NOT DUE until we reopen. We will waive any fines accumulated between March 16th and our reopening date.

New library entrance viewed from the outside.
New Library entrance - exterior 

When can I come inside the library?

You'll be able to pick up items at our curbside delivery starting August 31, and we're planning on starting grab & go services (letting in a limited amount for people for limited services) on Tuesday, September 14.

You might see construction workers and staff going in and out of the building before then. We ask that you please remain outside the building while we finish getting it ready for you. 

Are there library resources I can use while the Library is closed?

Yes. The Library provides a wide variety of options, including ebooks through OverDrive and Libby, and research databases for homework help and information.

new circulation desk in place in unfinished lobby
New circulation area

What if my items are due? Will I have to pay a fine?

You won't have to pay a fine! Until further notice, everything that's being returned is being checked in using our fine-free discharge process. If you turn in something that had a fine or was marked lost, those fees are removed from your account once the item is returned.

You may see some of your items from other CLEVNET libraries coming due. Don’t worry! Call the reference line at 330-406-9792 (available Monday-Friday, 9:00 AM – 5:00 PM) or email director@newtonfalls.org if you are concerned about due dates or potential blocks on your library card.

Can I drop my materials off in the book drop?

The book and media drops are back! We'll be emptying them at 5:00 PM every evening. Please wait until we're doing curbside service to return your WiFi hotspot - don't return them in the drops where they can be damaged!

If the drops are full, please don't leave your items outside the drops where they could be damaged or stolen. There's no need to rush - our materials still aren't due until our Library officially reopens. If you need assistance with any issues regarding fines/renewals during our closure please email director@newtonfalls.org. Thank you for being so patient!

I returned my books but they're still on my account! Why? 

Once items are returned, they're being quarantined for 3-5 days, so they'll still show up on your account for that short period of time.

new children's desk in unfinished children's area
New Children's Desk 

How do I get in touch with the librarians?

While we can’t answer our usual phone right now, our librarians are working from home and are available to take your call 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM, Monday – Friday. For general information, call: 330-406-9792. For tech help, call: 330-353-9495. For specific library card issues, please email: director@newtonfalls.org.

You can also email our librarians any time. Our Adult Services and Reference Librarians can be reached at dawnnutter@newtonfalls.org and malloryduriak@newtonfalls.org. Our Youth Services Librarian is available at chrissybraun@newtonfalls.org, and our Tech Instructor can be reached at jacobhill@newtonfalls.org.

new children's area unfinished
Expanded children's area

Are there still programs?

For the safety of the public, we aren’t holding any in-person programs right now, but there’s a lot happening online. Miss Chrissy is posting Story Times, crafts, science experiments and more for kids and their families on the library’s YouTube and Facebook pages. Join the Story Time Facebook group to see Story Time videos.

If you miss book discussion, you can join the Newton Falls Public Library Book Talk group on Facebook. The Writers’ Group is still meeting at their scheduled times over Google Meet and socializing in between meetings on the Newton Falls Writers' Club Facebook group. Contact malloryduriak@newtonfalls.org for more information.

If you’re interested in online programs but you’re having trouble getting the technology to work for you, don’t worry! Call our tech instructor at 330-353-9495 or email him at jacobhill@newtonfalls.org and he can help walk you through it. The tech education program was made possible in part by the Institute of Museum and Library Services and the State Library of Ohio.

How do I get a library card?

If you have a card at any other CLEVNET library, it will work at the Newton Falls Public Library. You can sign up here for a digital card to check out ebooks and other electronic materials. When we reopen, all you need to get a card is your photo ID and a piece of mail with your current address (and a parent/guardian if you’re under 18).

Meeting spaces under construction
Meeting spaces 

Renovation FAQs

Will the Library lose space for books, magazines, audiobooks, DVDS, and music CDs?

When the Library was built in 1984, it was important to dedicate most of the space to holding print materials. The Library did not enjoy the same resource-sharing agreements as we do today, and digital resources had not been invented yet. The Library will have a reduced number of book and media shelves after the renovation. Our goal is to have more copies of the items that Newton Falls cardholders want, and fewer copies of items that get little or no usage. In addition, our collaboration with CLEVNET, a consortium of 45 library systems across 12 different counties with 12 million items and approximately 1 million customers in Northeast Ohio, allows you access to the vast collections of every participating library.

What does the renovation cost?

The $915,000.00 estimated renovation project budget includes renovating most areas of the Library and comprises design and construction costs, new flooring, wall coverings, furniture, museum cases, shelving, and additional power sources.

New entrance to expanded Local History Room
New entrance to Local History Room.

Who is responsible for the construction?

The Library has hired IAP Government Services Group as our third-party administrator for the construction management process.  K2M Design is the architectural firm we hired to create a modern, dynamic space to inspire reading, learning, resource sharing, accessing technology, and connecting the community.

Will we be assessed higher taxes to pay for the renovation?

No, the Library assessment on your property tax bill will not increase because the Library does not have a capital fund nor a bond issue to fund this project. The Library has an operating property tax levy for general operating expenses. 

Outdoor patio area with benches and tables
Outdoor patio area with benches and tables

How will the renovation project be funded?

The renovation will be funded by donations receipted into the capital fund over the past twenty-five years, income received from the Alma M. and Peter G. Murri Trust since 2014, and funds saved over the past eight years by postponing non-essential capital improvements. 

The Library has decided to focus our efforts and funds into reutilizing the current square footage by making the space more usable and efficient for both the community and staff instead of increasing its footprint with an addition. 

As our legal service area population continues to decrease, so do the funds we receive from the Public Library Fund (State of Ohio) and from our general operating levy (Local). Combined State and Local Funding for the Newton Falls Public Library in 2018 was less than the amount the Library received in in 1998. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics consumer price index, prices in 2018 are 54.05% higher than average prices throughout 1998. The dollar experienced an average inflation rate of 2.18% per year during this period, meaning the real value of a dollar decreased.

Adding additional square footage to the current Library would increase our general operating costs (staffing, heating, cooling, etc...) which would in turn cause the Library to immediately seek additional property tax funds since we do not have control over our state funding.  Proposing to add new millage to our current operating levy is not option in 2020 yet the recommendation to add usable space is at an all-time high.

What is changing?

The Library will be utilizing current space more efficiently creating more public service and gathering spaces for the community.  The renovation will include a redesigned lobby with a modernized circulation desk; new furniture, wall coverings, and flooring throughout the entire building; new shelving; installation of more electrical outlets; larger Children’s and Young Adult Departments (increasing the areas from 1,694 square feet to 2,520 square feet); additional (4) private study rooms on the first floor; a redesigned modern Children's Department with new space for technology, programming and study; expansion of the Young Adult Department with more contemporary communal space; a redesigned Adult Services Department with less shelving and more shared space accented with modern furniture to meet 21st century technology needs;  increased area in the Local History Room (increasing the area from 975 square feet to 1,068 square feet) for more efficient filing and storage solutions along with adding updated furniture and museum cases; additional (up to 3) private study rooms on the second floor; and transitional furniture for the large meeting room. 

Where can I see more pictures of the renovation?

Follow along with our progress on Facebook! You can find pictures of the renovation in this album.


Source URL: https://newtonfalls.org/content/library-renovation-project-page