Atherton Library moving to temporary location this weekend

Town demolishing library to prepare for $22.8 million rebuild

The Atherton Library will close this weekend. It will reopen in a temporary space near the existing building as the town prepares to build a new $22.8 million library. (Photo by Natalia Nazarova/The Almanac)

The Atherton Library will close for a little over a week as the town prepares to demolish its current home at 2 Dinkelspiel Station Lane and build a new library, according to a press release.

The library will close on Saturday, Oct. 13, at 5 p.m., the San Mateo County Libraries and town of Atherton reported in an Oct. 11 press release. It will reopen on Monday, Oct. 22, at 10 a.m. in a 2,880-square-foot temporary modular building, often known as a portable, on a portion of the library’s current site.

This step will eventually lead to the building of a new, $22.8 million library.

The temporary library will include computers, fiction and nonfiction books, DVDs and a small children’s collection. It will also include an outdoor reading area, Wi-Fi, a photocopier, a printer, self-checkout and 3-D printing. Library programs and events will be moved to schools, Holbrook-Palmer Park and other locations in Atherton.

The Atherton City Council voted in August to prepare a bid package to demolish the current Atherton Library in November. The town began work on the temporary library site in March.

The library will automatically extend checked out materials due during the closure.

Plans for the new library include a dedicated quiet reading area, expanded children’s area, multiple meeting rooms, a makerspace and more.

The library already has a substantial amount of money in its building fund, but the San Mateo County Libraries Joint Powers Authority agreed in September to advance the town approximately $10 million in property tax revenues to help with building costs.

Atherton will request library construction bids this winter. It plans to award the project in spring 2019.

Original bids for the civic center project that the library is part of came in 40 percent above consultants' estimates last spring. The estimated cost of the new library includes a contingency of $2.1 million, wrote Atherton City Manager George Rodericks in an email.

The projected grand opening for the new library is 2021, according to the press release.

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