Posted by save our park, a resident of the Atherton: other neighborhood, on Oct 9, 2012 at 6:23 pm
Council Members Widmer, McKeithen, and Dobbie could have voted to put language in the ballot measure to limit the size of the library to 13,500 square feet. They did not. Instead the library can be 2 stories with a 10,000 square foot footprint or 20,000 square feet. Three council members could vote to redo the EIR.
Ms. Kupperman a candidate for council wrote the letter on library size.
Viewpoint - Wednesday, July 4, 2012
Letter: Size of library should not be a factor
Given the importance of determining the Atherton Library location it is not surprising that there is much controversy and debate. As a ballot measure, it's important that the discussion be a positive engagement centered on facts.
What is surprising and of equal but less visible importance is an underlying debate over the size of the Atherton Library and who it will serve. As a member of the San Mateo County Library System, the Atherton Branch Library's mandate is to serve the general public's information needs, to serve the public interest, and be open and welcoming of every community member.
The Atherton Library has been serving Atherton and unincorporated San Mateo County areas for many years. With over 9,400 Atherton Library cardholders, it certainly seems appropriate and reasonable to conclude that the Atherton Library serves a broader community and that the library should continue to serve those community members and any other person interested in availing themselves of the wonderful public library services we all enjoy.
However, current and former council persons express the notion that the library should be sized to only accommodate Atherton residents because only town residents are paying for the new building via the Donor City Fund. This is a troubling sentiment — that a community as fortunate as ours would consider deliberately planning a library centered on only accommodating themselves, when in fact they can afford to do otherwise. Do we want to be defined as a community not interested in sharing a place that provides opportunities for learning and literacy for all? I certainly hope not.
Denise Kupperman, Chair, Atherton Library Building Steering Committee