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Fairfield library to relocate if new office built

Richard D. L. Fulton

(9/13) The Fairfield Area Library would likely cease to exist if and when Carroll Valley Borough constructs a new, multi-faceted municipal building at the site of the current borough office.

Beth Cool, financial administrator with the Adams County Library, told the Carroll Valley Borough Council at their September 9 meeting that the county library’s Fairfield branch would likely be shut-down if room for a new library is created as part of a proposed municipal office complex.

Cool said, aside from the walls and door, the county would pay to equip, and provide the necessary employees, to operate the potential future library. "We’ll bring everything (needed)…the Fairfield Library branch would close."

According to project architect Benedict Dubbs, the current design, still regarded as a work-in-progress, is calling for 1,800 square foot public library (2,072 square foot considering all library-associated amenities) as part of the "community center" portion of the proposed new borough offices.

Dubbs also reviewed the current design at the meeting, which is being considered by the borough Building Steering Committee.

The building itself as a whole is being proposed at 13,400 square feet (gross), with 2,878 square feet devoted to the municipal government operations. The area designation for police operations would comprise around 3,327 square feet.

The new building would also house community resources, aside the library, which would account for another 3,700 square feet. The design also calls for outdoor amenities including a stage.

Council President John Van Volkenburgh said, "It’s (the proposed building) not just the borough office. It’s going to be built for the community in general."

The estimated cost of the new municipal building is around $2,180,978, several hundred thousands of dollars less than the cost projected for overhauling and upgrading the current facility (estimated at $2,461,640).

Carroll Valley Borough Mayor Ronald Harris has often pointed-out the need for a new borough office due to the degraded condition of the existing building, which has been plagued with roof leaks, flooding, wood rot, and diminishing available office and storage space. Harris previously stated, "The building is falling apart."

The mayor said previously the project should not trigger and tax increase, and would be paid for by existing money in conjunction with grants.

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