A standing-room-only crowd attended the grand re-opening celebration of renovations to the East Wing of the Oak Ridge Public Library on Tuesday.
The renovations include a brand-new Children’s Room and bathrooms that meet Americans with Disability Act standards.
The projects were made possible through a combination of funding from the City of Oak Ridge, a Support Grant to Local Governments, and the Friends of Oak Ridge Public Library administering a bequest (a personal property gift) on behalf of Jerry Kinnamon.
Jefferson Middle School art students created a mural for the Children’s Room, according to the city. The Children’s Room was designed by Opening the Book, North America, a woman-owned business specializing in public library design and was installed by local contractor First Place Finish.
Barber McMurry Architects, headquartered in Knoxville, designed the bathroom renovations, which were realized by Wright Contracting, another local company.
“The Children’s Room is our most heavily used service, and I’m thrilled to have it reopen. I hope that everyone will feel welcome and enjoy the new East Wing,” Library Director Julie Forkner said.
The library renovation projects cost about $510,000. Construction started in January, although conceptual work started about three years ago.
Other recent library renovations include a new Oak Ridge Room and a meeting room.
More renovations are planned for next year, the city said, and they will include new powered furniture for the main library as well as new study and computer carrels. Plans for a permanent book sale space for the Friends of the Library and a Library Café are also being considered.
More information will be added as it becomes available.
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