WORKS have commenced on Foster Library’s $92,000 upgrade, which will make it the state’s first library to be accessed out of hours with a secure swipe card.
The project is jointly funded by a State Government grant of $69,000 from the Living Libraries Infrastructure Fund, $20,000 from West Gippsland Libraries, and $3,000 from the Friends of Foster Library.
The project will provide minimal disruption to library patrons and the building’s other tenants. Works are scheduled to be completed by 29 April, 2019, and will include:
– The installation of sliding doors providing direct access to the library during staffed hours, and secure access to pre-approved patrons after business hours;
• This is Victoria’s first open-access library out of hours
• It will allow the 50 percent of the Foster community who can’t access the Library during work hours to do so after hours;
• The library will have a screening process to ensure it only provides out of hours access to responsible patrons
– Minor modifications to enhance the usage of space within the library and the front lawn;
• This effectively doubles the library’s floorspace and makes for an exciting and highly-visible event space
– New furniture and an interior refresh
• WiFi usage is rapidly increasing, and so we are endeavouring to make Foster Library a more comfortable space for people who bring their own devices
• The more flexible floor layout will include moveable bookshelves, allowing floorspace to be expanded and the library to accommodate more people at its events.
As part of other plans to improve access to library services in Foster and surrounding towns, West Gippsland Libraries will also be extending the library’s hours to be open between 10am and 4.30pm on Mondays, and 10am to 4.30pm on Thursdays – also commencing Monday, 29 April, 2019.
West Gippsland Libraries Deputy Chairperson, Cr Alyson Skinner, said the ultimate goal was to increase people’s access to library services in the region.
“More opening hours will result in a greater number of opportunities for people in Foster and its neighbouring towns to access and enjoy our free and wonderful library services,” she said.Cr Skinner also thanked the building’s co-occupants for their support of the works, and praised council workers for their consideration of the co-occupants during work.