Plans for a new Lake Villa District Library moved ahead this week with the award of a construction contract.
Camosy Construction of Zion was selected by the library board from among nine bidders for a cost not to exceed $18.23 million to build the new facility at 38110 N. Munn Road on the east side of Crooked Lake.
"It's a very big step and we're very excited," said library Director Andy Lentine.
The Munn Road site is about a half mile away from the longtime library home at Grand Avenue and Deep Lake Road. A groundbreaking hasn't been scheduled, but construction is expected to start this summer and take about 16 months.
In June 2016, the library selected and purchased the 29-acre site for $2.5 million. While only 12 acres are buildable, the site was considered the most flexible for the future of the four considered.
"The site is unique -- that actually drove the design of the building," according to Lentine. "The topography of the site is about a 35-foot drop from street level to the lake."
The building will use geothermal rather than mechanical heating and cooling, and will incorporate other features to take advantage of the location, she added.
"The entire west side of the building is primarily glass and it's situated in a way to capture the sunlight and the views," Lentine said. "Most people don't even know the lake is there."
A new building twice the size of the current one will allow for bigger and more meeting and collaboration space, as well as a dedicated area for young adults, among other amenities.
Money that had been set aside since 1989 in a capital fund will be used to cover the construction cost. The district this spring also received a $125,000 state grant.
Furniture, equipment and other items are not included in the construction cost. The district will fund the difference with proceeds from the sale of the current building and/or borrowing.
The library has been at the current location since 1980 and serves about 40,000 residents in Lake Villa, Lindenhurst and part of Round Lake Heights, Round Lake Beach and Antioch, but the population is expected to increase by 25 percent by 2040.
Visit www.lvdl.org for information and images of the new facility.