HARTFORD –State Representative Vincent Candelora (R-North Branford) today announced that the State Bond Commission had approved a $1 million commitment in state grants for expansion and renovation to the Atwater Memorial Library in North Branford.
The Atwater Library will use the funds to expand from the current 6,100 square feet to 15,000 square feet, creating a unified campus with the historic Reynolds-Beers house and its barn.
According to Library Director Robert Hull, the added space will allow for full handicapped features, more space for collections, children’s program area, community room, teen library, seminar room, local history and genealogy collections, restrooms in the children’s library, added computers and more parking.
“Excellent public libraries enhance the culture, economic viability and image of the communities they serve,” said Hull. “Expanding and renovating the Atwater and Smith Libraries will create social and educational centers to serve the town for decades to come.”
“I am pleased to be an advocate for these grants, which will ease the pressure on local tax dollars,” said Representative Candelora. “The improvements to Atwater Library, combined with those to Edward Smith Library in Northford will provide North Branford with a more state-of-the art public library and research system which will be a tremendous benefit to everyone in the community. I appreciate Governor Rell continuing to keep North Branford a priority.”
The $1 million grant is from a total pool of $3.5 million in competitive library grants statewide. Construction at the Atwater Library is scheduled to begin after work is completed on Northford’s Edward Smith Library in early 2009. The state has now approved a total of $1.5 million for North Branford Library projects. All work should be completed by early 2010.