On November 17th, 2012 the new Holyoke Library expansion and renovation was begun. Since 1902 the Holyoke Public Library has occupied the block between Maple, Essex, Chestnut, and Cabot Streets. In addition to being the City’s library, its long history has included housing an extensive collection of art and a natural history museum.
Much effort has gone into the preparation and planning of this project to retain decorative and historic elements of the old building while integrating principles of sustainability into the construction of the new building. The 14.5 million Library project will renovate the 109 year old historic building using ‘green’ building techniques for the expansion, utilizing sustainable building materials, energy efficient lighting, non-toxic paints and protective landscaping. In addition to the 5.5 million borrowed by the city, the project has attained 4.3 million dollars in state funds, 4.6 million dollars of funding through the library board’s endowment and generous contributions that include a $200,000.00 donation from People’s Bank.
When the 114,563 square foot project is finished, Holyoke will have a state-of-the-art public library and community center that will support expanded children’s programming, public access to 40 new computer stations, public WiFi, meeting space and all the technological advantages of a major city library. The new library is expected to open in the fall of 2013.