After shutting down for six months, the Poplar Creek Public Library District's Sonya Crawshaw branch is showing off a $1 million makeover.
The Hanover Park facility has been kept under wraps while crews worked on a long-overdue project at the 22-year-old building at 4300 Audrey Lane.
Construction focused on adding 1,000 square feet and making bathrooms more accessible. Patrons are now greeted by new paint, carpeting and lighting.
"It feels happy and attractive," board President Susan Spooner said Wednesday. "It used to feel kind of dark and sad."
Dwarfed by the district's main branch in Streamwood, where officials unveiled a $23 million expansion in 2009, Sonya Crawshaw better serves loyal patrons hailing from Bartlett, Hanover Park and Schaumburg, officials say.
"We wanted them to have as nice a library as the north end of the district," Spooner said.
Among the biggest changes are distinct spaces for the adult and children's departments.
Before, older patrons studied or filled out job applications alongside kids playing games. Officials expect a mature crowd to rediscover the library.
"I hope they'll realize, 'Hey, kids aren't sitting on top of me,'" branch Manager Vikki Hallack said.
The district also purchased new computers serving both departments. Eight PCs -- double the previous total -- sit in new workstations.
Officials are still crunching the final cost of the roughly $1 million project, funded by reserves and a $50,000 state grant.
With the bigger space, library staff could add more programs like children story-time sessions, Spooner said. The renovations mark the biggest project in the building since the Sonya Crawshaw branch debuted in 1991.
"It's way nicer than it's ever been," she said.
The branch is open from noon to 9 p.m. Mondays through Thursdays; and noon to 5 p.m. Fridays through Sundays.
For details, call (630) 372-0052 or visit Poplarcreek.lib.il.us.