Rolling Meadows Library building addition opens Sunday
The Rolling Meadows Library on Sunday will unveil its first building expansion in three decades -- a 1,625-square-foot addition that includes two small group meeting rooms and a lounge.
Construction started early in April, and crews were putting finishing touches on their work this week ahead of the grand opening and dedication at noon.
Library officials started discussing expansion plans three years ago, as patrons have long asked for smaller rooms to meet and study.
While larger groups have gathered in the library's second floor community meeting room and board room, the new meeting rooms and lounge in the southwest corner of the building at 3110 Martin Lane will provide visibility to people in the parking lot and nearby Salk Park.
"It's nice to have a flex room that people can see," Library Director David Ruff said of the Garden Lounge, which has high-counter seating, charging stations for mobile devices, vending machines and an electronic fireplace. "It can be used as advertising to show the things going on at the library."
The two adjoining rooms have wall-mounted flat-screen TVs for presentations and whiteboard walls that can be written on with special markers. Each room has a table and five chairs. One room will require reservations before groups can use it, Ruff said.
Even with the new construction, the footprint of the 43,000-square-foot library didn't change, since work crews essentially enclosed a rock and tree garden within the building's foundation.
The library is using reserve funds to pay the estimated $810,000 project cost.
The west wing of the library has been closed since April due to construction, and librarians have retrieved books for patrons since then. Some 20 computer stations need to be installed, carpeting cleaned, and desks set up before the reopening Sunday, Ruff said.
The original eastern half of the library was built in 1967, and the western portion added in 1987.
The next big project on the library's docket is a proposed 1,075-square-foot expansion of the receiving room area on the north side of the building. It would be used for storage and house the book stock for the Friends of the Library's semiannual book sales.
That project could be another two to three years away as the library builds up its reserve fund.