Archive for Thursday, April 26, 2007

Library impact

April 26, 2007


To the editor:

Before our recent election, I was interested to hear the lively discussions about economic development in Lawrence. At one of the candidate forums, there were a number of questions regarding our public library, which is has been one of the "hot" topics this year. I am writing to inform readers about a recent report published by the Urban Libraries Council (ULC). This report finds that the return on investment in public libraries benefits individuals, but also strengthens a community's capacity to address urgent issues related to economic development.

The purpose of their research was to encourage dialogue between planners, developers, elected officials, businesses and public libraries. Topics covered in the ULC report include improving early literacy and school readiness, strategies for building workforce participation, small business support through public libraries, and the ways that library facilities have a positive impact on downtowns, commercial areas and neighborhoods.

The plans that are currently under review have taken several of these variables into consideration, but it is my sincerest hope that we can somehow find a way to improve the physical plant of our public library and take advantage of other opportunities, as mentioned in the report. ("Making Cities Stronger: Public Library Contributions to Local Economic Development" is published on the Urban Libraries Council Web site,, and underwritten by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation).

Arla Jones,



perkins 11 years, 2 months ago

Nothing is wrong with "the physical plant of our public library." Stop trying to fix, with our precious tax dollars, something that is not broken.

50YearResident 11 years, 2 months ago

"The Computer Age is making the Librarys obsolete". I say delay any decision for four years and see if indeed this is a correct statement. The present library may be more than adequate by that time and the City will have saved $40 million.

KsTwister 11 years, 2 months ago

If this city had paid attention to the real necessities first it may have been different although I've been to the library and it is not in dire straits at all. To have people with no budgeting background at city hall over spending on every personal issue they want has left no surplus for things like this and to ask taxpayers for their credit card is just ridiculous. And just because you give city hall want it asks for does not mean that it where your money goes either. Lawrence does not need a high dollar library at all. They are really telling you we need some more money coming in because the lawsuits and mismanagement has the city worried.

Sigmund 11 years, 2 months ago

Apparently when it comes to debauching taxpayers pocketbooks, no doesn't necessarily mean no.

KsTwister 11 years, 2 months ago

Lawrence stupidity justs keeps growing.

News_to_me 11 years, 2 months ago

Hey, Get this. Just heard on 6news that the city is making homeowners fix their own sidewalks and not just based on complaints. They're going out and marking them. I guess the plan for repairing them never got off the ground. Gotta' have all that extra money for that new 'gateway" way out west. Next-repair your own streets and fill your own potholes

Richard Heckler 11 years, 2 months ago

Expand the library at it's current site and forget the $10,000,000 parking package. Rehab is better than nothing...for which I am quite sure the library staff would agree. So for 17,000,000 or less we get a few more years.

When the superdome crowd noticed that taxpayers might ante up for a library they thought let's throw in our hat. NO TO THAT. Again improve and use what we have.

anonimiss 11 years, 2 months ago

Libraries Council releasing a 'study' that says that libraries are good? Imagine that! Surely it's objective and scientifically sound.

From their website, "For more than 30 years the Urban Libraries Council (ULC) has worked to strengthen public libraries as an essential part of urban life. A membership organization of North America 's premier public library systems and the corporations that serve them..."

A foundation whose purpose is to promote libraries, comprised of libraries, publishing a pro-library study. Sounds like one of the old City Commission's 'studies' about growth by anti-growth organizations.

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