Heaven for bookworms as refurbished city library reopens

June 18, 2012 by  

In a final sweep of St. Louis Library renovations, one branch cuts the symbolic ribbon tomorrow to reopen a library which has polished the old to hold shine to the new.

Carondelet Branch administrators, staff, and community and state public figures gathered for a ribbon-cutting ceremony at the Carondelet Branch Saturday, June 16, at 6800 Michigan Avenue to celebrate the 1908 neoclassical, granite building’s buffed up luster alongside the 21st century necessities.

Not surprisingly, when architect Ernst Preisler built the Carondelet Library at the turn of the previous century, restrooms did not meet the requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act, computers did not exist, and parking lots were hardly in great need.

Renovations include reformed and additional restrooms, an elevator, a touched up interior, a modernized collections of CDs, reading materials, and resources, newer technology, an enlarged parking lot, and a fresh building entrance.

Banner printing and sign printing are also important elements in the renovation of a structure. For this reason, St. Louis-based printing companies were given contracts for these jobs.

The library’s restoration project lasted 18 months and cost $3.3 million and is the most recent of the St. Louis Library’s cycles of capital improvement projects supported by a property tax increase passed by voters in 1994. The Central Library is in the midst of a $70 million refurbishment project and is scheduled to reopen in early December.

Carondelet returned to its regular hours today, on Monday, June 18, which is 9:00 am to 6:00 pm on Mondays.