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Menlo Park: Council considers pairing main and Belle Haven library projects

Original post made on Jan 18, 2019

The Menlo Park City Council voted 3-1 on Jan. 15 to move forward with a strategy and timeline to build a new Belle Haven branch library and rebuild or renovate the main library, as well as combine elements of the two projects to streamline efficiency.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Friday, January 18, 2019, 11:48 AM

Comments (7)

7 people like this
Posted by Lynne Fovinci
a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Jan 18, 2019 at 12:51 pm

I am greatly encouraged that Menlo Park will be moving forward with next steps in modernizing our library system.

10 people like this
Posted by Monica Corman
a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Jan 18, 2019 at 1:18 pm

Menlo Park can do what so many other Bay Area cities and towns have done in the recent past and that is, to build modern libraries that can serve the needs of people of all ages in the community. It was very gratifying to have the MP Council vote to move forward with a strategy and timeline to do this in Menlo Park. How great it will be to enrich the people of Menlo Park with libraries that have spaces for programs, meeting rooms, children and teen sections, and of course, books and quiet places for reading and study. And most important of all, libraries are free to those who come there to learn and be inspired. What a wonderful concept.

5 people like this
Posted by Mandy Montoya
a resident of Menlo Park: University Heights
on Jan 18, 2019 at 2:29 pm

Menlo Park is such a wonderful place to live and raise a family. The type of community I want to live in has public resources and facilities that welcome all, inspire us and meet the needs of the community as a whole. I hope we can find a way to support something that has historically been so important to the foundation of our towns and young people's minds.

6 people like this
Posted by Lynne Bramlett
a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Jan 18, 2019 at 4:22 pm

Lynne Bramlett is a registered user.

Council is right to be cautious regarding coupling both library projects together. The residents' expressed concerns about the Main Library project also need addressing. A major concern has to do with if a new Main Library is more important than other unfunded, yet approved or proposed, capital improvement projects. We don't have unlimited money to pay for everything so we will have to prioritize!

We need to prioritize in an effective way that deeply involves residents, small business owners and major stakeholders such as our schools! Otherwise, I predict that MP will continue to see changing priorities, undue influence of the squeaky wheels or special interests and unhappy staff as their priorities keep changing.

The best way to prioritize would be for our Council to commit to a community-based strategic planning process. We need to establish a shared vision, shared short list of values and a shared idea as to our strategic priority areas! While we have a myriad of plans, some with the name "strategic" in them -- we lack one overarching living document to guide decision-making! A strategic plan would sit above all other plans in MP and give our governing body, residents and stakeholders a living document to guide MP into the future. It would help us all know how we could best contribute our time and talents towards achieving our shared vision and strategic goals.

Voters elected our new council, at least in part, because they wanted a new direction for MP. As I see it, our gravest need is to institute "good governing" reforms based on best practices from other municipalities.

Meanwhile, the Library and its supporters will find advocacy-related resources at the American Library Association's sponsored United for Libraries website. Web Link The book "Vote Yes for Libraries" (Anne M. Turner) also has some interesting insights.

5 people like this
Posted by betsaloo
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Jan 21, 2019 at 1:41 pm

I am so excited to support 2 new libraries in Menlo Park. As a provider of family art workshops at many peninsula libraries, i can attest to the need for more communal space. Workshops in the Menlo Main library basement is not what our families deserve. I ask the council and citizens to have a bold vision for the entire city - imagine the joy we can bring to every citizen - now THAT is something to prioritize!

2 people like this
Posted by Carmen
a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Jan 23, 2019 at 8:22 pm

What happened to housing?

3 people like this
Posted by Mical Atz Brenzel
a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Jan 24, 2019 at 9:05 am

I was very happy to see the City Council approve the plan and timeline for modernizing both of our Menlo Park libraries. This is a positive direction for our city and a welcome use of City resources. Thank you to all of those folks who have worked so diligently on this project and will continue to do so.

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