New library building opens to great fanfare 0
With a maximum of fanfare, the Collingwood Public Library opened its new home Thursday, culminating a saga that's seen three years of construction, two architects and two groundbreakings.
A slew of of the requisite dignitaries were on hand for the hour-long ceremony under a brilliant cerulean sky and fierce sun. They included Simcoe-Grey MPP Jim Wilson, Simcoe Warden and Wasaga Beach Mayor Cal Patterson, and Mayor Chris Carrier. Simcoe-Grey MP Helena Guergis did not attend, but instead sent a letter and a plaque.
The facility, which officially opened April 1, has seen a 300% increase in visitors over the numbers who were coming into the previous library, said library committee chair Donna Mansfield during the opening ceremonies.
"The numbers -wow," said Mansfield. "You hope for an increase but a 300% increase is wonderful. It's a wonderful statement for the town -- they've embraced the library on this site."
A public fundraising campaign for the facility has also been wildly successful, bringing in $1.25 million.
"This is very important and could we have asked for a better day," gushed Mansfield. "I didn't have any grey hair when it started, but I'm told I do now."
"We hope everyone -- everyone -- will come and just spend time here," she That's what we wanted when we designed it and what we designed it for. We wanted everyone to be able to come in and feel welcome and just feel at home."
The new library responds to the trend of people wanting to spend more time in libraries, said library CEO Kerri Robinson.
The building will also be certified as LEED Gold -- only the second library in Canada to carry that title.
-With files from Morgan Ian Adams