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Nov 22nd

Hennepin County to begin planning new library in North Minneapolis

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Hennepin County's 2008 budget includes $7.5 million programmed for 2009 and another $7.5 million for 2010 for the library, which is contingent upon City of Minneapolis approval of the Hennepin County Library and Minneapolis Public Library merger. Hennepin County's 2008 budget includes $7.5 million programmed for 2009 and another $7.5 million for 2010 for the library, which is contingent upon City of Minneapolis approval of the Hennepin County Library and Minneapolis Public Library merger.

Planning for the new library will begin in 2008, to replace the shuttered Webber Park Library, which is within Commissioner Mark Stenglein's district and adjacent to Commissioner Opat's district.

"North side residents have patiently waited for a world-class library in our community, and today the Hennepin County Board ensured that they will soon have it," Commissioner Opat said. Commissioner Stenglein added: "This library will feature the latest technology, family-friendly amenities and of course, easy access to the entire collection of Hennepin County Library books and multimedia materials."

"The new library will have improved access from all directions of the neighborhood, increased parking capacity, 21st century technology, and it will be more accessible to persons with disabilities," Commissioner Stenglein said.

The new library will replace Webber Park Library, which has been closed since December 2006 but will reopen, upon a successful merger, in January 2008. "Webber Park Library has been in our community for a long time, and we will be happy to reopen it under the Hennepin County banner. But it is not a long-term solution," Commissioner Opat added.

Hennepin County funding for the new library will be reduced by Minneapolis-approved library bonding. A site has not yet been selected for the new library.
 

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