SitNews - Stories in the News - Ketchikan, Alaska


YES! The Public Library Should Stay Downtown
By Robert D. Warner


June 10, 2010

Dear Sitnews Editor:

Three cheers to the grass roots folks responsible for the petition drive to keep the Ketchikan Public Library in the downtown core area. It just makes good sense that a public vote on the issue would be the first step in deciding possible locations for the public library. I find it most unfortunate that this critical step was never taken or encouraged by city and library managers. As a result, significant funds have been spent and public frustration aroused with little accomplished. We are very fortunate that this group moved forward to ask city residents where they would like to locate their public library.

Recently I had the opportunity to review the "Site Selection Criteria" which were written and used by the Seattle Public Library in their LIBRARIES FOR ALL capital improvement projects. This program covered both the renovation of older library buildings and construction of new public library buildings. Criteria included that public library sites should be in areas visited by all segments of the primary community served. The library should make a positive contribution to the neighborhoods served and be compatible with existing land use plans. Library sites must be supportive of access and use by library patrons and in compliance with the community's comprehensive plan.

In my professional opinion, at least two city owned downtown sites meet these important site selection criteria. The public library can become the anchor and hub to revitalize downtown. What is good for a store is good for a public library. Easy access, parking, visibility, transportation route, bus stop, etc. are always nice. Copper Ridge flunks on almost all of them. Would we build a new store in a gravel pit?

Let's move ahead on this project by taking this important first step of keeping our Public Library downtown!

Robert D. Warner
Ketchikan, AK

About: Bob Warner is a retired community college librarian with over 30 years of library experience.

Received June 10, 2010 - Published June 10, 2010


Viewpoints - Opinion Letters:

letter Webmail Your Opinion Letter to the Editor



Note: Comments published on Viewpoints are the opinions of the writer
and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Sitnews.


E-mail your letters & opinions to
Your full name, city and state are required for letter publication.

SitNews ©2010
Stories In The News
Ketchikan, Alaska