Letter To The Editor: It’s Well Past Time To Build A New Town Library

Photo: What the new Belmont Public Library will look like if the debt exclusion passes

To the editor:

We’re long-time residents of Belmont and heartily support the Library and the Rink projects.

When we were finally able to afford a modest Belmont house, we moved here for the fine schools (by reputation) and the “well-managed” Town. We soon found out that “well-managed” meant the Town wasn’t spending money on infrastructure or materials. We were shocked to find that the Burbank School
had cracked and lifting asbestos tiles, water-damaged and crumbling plaster walls, rickety and failing windows, faulty plumbing, very dated mechanical systems, lack of educational materials and equipment, etc. etc. The Burbank was in worse shape than the old 1920 elementary school I first attended in the 1950’s, right before it was replaced. Fortunately, the Burbank staff was superb and creative. Small classes after kindergarten were great for the students!

And fortunately for the Town, gradually over the last 46 years most of the neglected Town buildings have been renovated or replaced. But not the Library. The deterioration we found in Burbank in 1979 can be seen in the Library today. The director can do only so much to upgrade the interior, but the structure isn’t sound. It’s time to rebuild.

Our family spent good times in the Children’s Room with Joyce. She, as well as the welcoming staff, gave all of the kids special attention. There were always good activities and programs. Free passes to various museums helped our budget. When they were older, the kids depended on the library for Young Adult fiction and reference materials. We have borrowed videos, audiobooks, periodicals, new books, and old. We’ve attended Library classes and special events. The Library was and is a central part of our Belmont lives. And when my parents retired to Belmont, the Library became my mother’s (a retired librarian) favorite, too. She loved the selection in the collection!

The Library is so much more today – I hope everyone knows how many more offerings are available these days – for free!

The time is right. We have substantial donations toward a new building.

Please support the new Library.

Nancy Davis
Emerson Street

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Comments

  1. Jon says

    Amazing how when they want a new shiny building everybody is a structural engineer and prescient predictor of building longevity. We all live in houses built 100 years ago that have been renovated but somehow a civic building can’t make it 60 years around here.

    We have a wonderful library that fits our town. Let’s renovate it instead of replacing it with some characterless glass monstrosity that barely fits on the current site. Or, at least lets just give people in this town the ability to choose what kind of library they want. I’m sick of only being given a choice between “do nothing” and “pay for a ridiculously large new building.”

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