South Pittsburgh Reporter - Serving South Pittsburgh Since 1939

Disappointed in library choice

 


I was distressed to read of the decision to rebuild the Carrick branch of the Carnegie Library in its existing location (Carrick Library will be all new from the bottom up, October 10, 2016).

After talking with other residents who are active and involved in the community, it seems this decision was made with little or no input from the neighbors or patrons of the branch. If in fact there were informational meetings on this matter, other than the single one mentioned in the article almost a year ago, they were not well known. This smells of lack of transparency.

Since the libraries are heavily funded by taxpayer dollars through the RAD and .25 percent Allegheny County property tax, I feel this decision deserved input from the people who pay for it.

I am a frequent user of the library and receive email notices for books and events but never recall any notice of a meeting on this.

The choice of location seems to be the worst possible option for this facility. There will be no elevator to accommodate less abled patrons and employees which will probably lead to legal issues in the future. Also, the fact that there will be a further determent to people using the library, as I myself being disabled have frequently had to cancel visits to the branch due to lack of convenient access.

I know for a fact other locations were looked at and even considered “perfect” according to the owner of at least one of these properties, but the decision was made to rebuild in place and encourage a thriving business next door to relocate outside the city, taking jobs and tax revenue with them to another municipality.

The demolition and construction will stress an already overburdened corridor through the South Hills and of course once commuters/customers find another route to and from work or shops, they will not return, punishing existing business even more and creating traffic nightmares for nearby schools.

The library will be closed for a considerable time further inconveniencing patrons. Of course these patrons can utilize the Knoxville branch less than a mile away, (not that far unless you’re walking) which just had its own renovation recently completed at a cost of over three and a half million dollars.

James Lowery

Carrick Library patron

 

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