Tonganoxie Books are stacked two rows deep and on top of shelves at the one-room Tonganoxie Library. One adult-sized and one child-sized table serve as the only places for patrons to read or study, and space between bookshelves is virtually non-existent.
No such problems will confront visitors to the new city library, scheduled to open in December, said two women who spearheaded the campaign to pass the $350,000 bond issue and a half-cent sales tax increase to finance the building. Janet Angell, library board president and building committee chairman, and Earleta Morey, member of the board, pointed out the inadequacies of the current building while citing the benefits of the new one.
THE CURRENT 1,000-square-foot facility doesn't meet state library standards, which require total floor space of at least 3,950 square feet, 20 spaces for reader seating per 600 square feet, a minimum of 15,000 volumes and 600 square feet of space for group activities, restrooms and storage, they said.
However, the new 6,000-square-foot facility will feature a community room, children's area, couches for adult reading, space for the Tonganoxie Genealogical Society, modern equipment, restrooms, storage area and, perhaps most importantly, more room for books.
ON TUESDAY, construction workers were completing masonry work, installing the air ducts, putting on doors and touching up sheetrock. Angell and Morey pointed out the eventual layout of the furnishings and discussed wall coverings and color schemes.
Workers moved the old book drop and the frosted glass window that reads "City Library" from the 51-year-old building to the new one. The quilt blocks that now serve as curtains in the old library will be framed in plexiglass and put on display.
Angell and Morey said the library board plans to extend the library's hours from 26 per week to at least 40. Board members also hope to purchase a fax machine and computers for public use, and anticipate greater participation in fall and summer children's reading programs.