City of Bonita Springs establishes a Library Task Force in 2010 to: Study the advantages and disadvantages to remaining in a county operated library; Explore the extent of utilization of the current library; Make a recommendation to the City Council to expand the current or build a new library.
Library Division makes presentations about library services it provides to Bonita Springs residents to the: – Bonita Springs City Council - May 3, 2010 – Bonita Springs Library Task Force - March 16, 2011
Lee County Construction & Design staff develops an assessment for facility expansion of the current Bonita Springs Library on May 9, 2011. It was provided to the Bonita Springs City Council.
Joint meeting between the Lee County Board of County Commissioners (BOCC) and the Bonita Springs City Council held on May 11, 2011. The City Council presents a recommendation regarding library service to the BOCC which includes the following: Maintain the current relationship with Lee County in regards to library service; Expand the size of the library by 24,000 square feet (for a total size of 36,000 square feet); Obtain a commitment from the BOCC to provide project funding at a minimum of $4 million.
Recommendation from the City Council is positively received by the BOCC. The City Council agrees to send a formal resolution to the BOCC. Resolution is approved by the City Council on September 21, 2011 and forwarded to the BOCC.
Staff members from the City of Bonita Springs and Lee County meet on September 14, 2011 to determine a course of action in response to the Library Task Force recommendations. Staff identifies three alternatives: Expand the current library building; Tear down the existing building and build a new library on the same site; Look for vacant building and/or land to build a new library.
At the same meeting, the County staff proposes that the total size of the library be approximately 25,000 square feet. This would more than double the size of the current library building and fit the scale of existing LCLS library facilities. Regional size libraries– Over 30,000 sq. ft. Medium size libraries – 7,500 – 30,000 sq. ft. Small size libraries – Under 7,500 sq. ft.
Future Library Needs 1.Improve existing facilities as warranted due to age, size, usage and service populations (for example, Bonita Springs and North Fort Myers), while being attentive to the impact of the new Fort Myers Regional Library on other library locations.
Future Library Needs 2.Restoration of service hours at all library locations. 3.Provision of library service to areas currently underserved – Daniels Corridor and East Lehigh Acres.
Decision Points: 1.The LCLS current millage rate does not generate sufficient revenue to support anticipated expenditures. 2.The site and size for a new Bonita Springs Library needs to be decided. 3.The funding and timeframe for construction of a new Bonita Springs Library needs to be determined.