We’re reaching out to voters this November with a bond issue for capital improvements. Although it’s never easy to approach voters for tax dollars, it’s always a pleasure to share how we are able to better serve our patrons as we provide much needed services to all our citizens. In the spirit of transparency, I’ll be using this blog to share information.
This week, let’s review what’s happening with Thompson.
Thompson Station opened in 1979 as a partnership with the Ledgemont High School to serve the Montville-Thompson area. At that time, one library employee and several volunteers served library patrons. In 2014, the Berkshire and Ledgemont school boards voted for a territory transfer and a merger of the two districts. At that time, the high school building which had housed the Thompson Station for 35 years, closed and the station moved to the Ledgemont Elementary on Burrows Road. Geauga County Public Library Board of Trustees invested in sprucing up the space that would contain the station with new furniture, new computers and new books & materials. The new space was dedicated October 5, 2014. You can read about it here.
Since that time, there has been uncertainty surrounding the current location. There was talk of further school consolidation resulting in a large, campus style school located by the Kent State University Geauga campus. It’s important to the GCPL Board of Trustees that we are serving the patrons in the northeastern portion of Geauga County. As it is, Thompson Station has limited service hours. It’s located inside of an existing and operating elementary school building. It’s a bit off the beaten path and even after visiting the place more than a dozen times, if I don’t come at it from 528, I get myself turned around. More than a few administrators have had the same issue.
When we started our facilities review last year, we knew this was an area that begged for a stand-alone library building with full service hours, small conference or tutor rooms, a large community meeting space and a decent selection of library materials for the folks living in the top corner of the county.
As a public servant, I struggle as I see inequities in services among all our locations. If this bond issue passes, the residents in the northeast corner of Geauga County will have their own dedicated facility under the direction of the GCPL Board of Trustees and will offer citizens consistent full-time hours, an expanded collection, community space, access to technology and a knowledgeable staff who is ready to help people find the materials they want.