Allen County Public Library explores branch expansion and renovation


FORT WAYNE, Indiana (WANE) – With increased use and aging buildings, the Allen County Public Library is exploring options for its next chapter.

The board met in a special session on Wednesday to hear branch-by-branch reviews from Bostwick Design Partnership, a Cleveland-based architectural firm.

The study (download available below) assessed each branch based on size versus usage, building condition and expansion capacity for current conditions and 10-year projections.

For example, the Aboite branch is not of adequate size, the lowest rating for building condition, does not allow for future expansion, and cannot be renovated to meet demand expected in 2032.

The cost of the project is unknown as the board faces so many choices. CAPL’s director of community engagement, Stephanny Smith, hasn’t ruled out asking taxpayers for help.

“In yesterday’s meeting, we shared that this would likely result in a referendum and then a place on the ballot to approve the link,” she emailed WANE 15.

“Because we haven’t determined the final scope of the project, we don’t have a dollar amount for what the taxpayer contribution might be. It was also shared that the library had reserves and would be able to contribute up to $ 21 million to the project. “

The public can speak at a meeting on Monday, January 10 at 7 p.m. Registration for the live session is available on the library website. The library plans to offer a public inquiry, open houses and will launch a new website,, on Monday.

“It took us a year to initiate conversations with our community and our library.
staff to get there. This is where the fun part begins. I am delighted to hear what the
the community reflects on the recommendations. Residents of Allen County feel very
logged into the library, and I hope we get a lot of feedback, ”said Susan
Baier, Director General of ACPL.

The final version of the plan, which will be received by the CPRA Board of Directors in April
2022, will reflect community feedback.


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