Library Expansion

Construction workers poured the concrete foundation Monday afternoon near the St. Clair Scenic Regional Library. The expansion will include meeting and study rooms, a children’s area, a larger teen space, an adult space equipped with an electric fireplace and a coffee bar, a community garden, and an outside patio.

Submitted Photo

The construction for the St. Clair Scenic Regional Library expansion is well underway.

The concrete foundation was poured Monday, according to Kara Bell, St. Clair branch manager. She said the steel frame for the expansion will soon be put up and changes to the electrical system will take place later this week.

“Things are progressing pretty well,” Bell said.

Preparations for the construction took place earlier this fall. Some tasks included the removal of the house and print shop, clearing brush and the installation plumbing and gas lines, according to Bell.

Additionally, a ramp at the back of the building is being renovated and the library’s internet is being updated.

“(Construction crews) been doing lots of things that aren’t real evident when you drive by, but they’re all things that had to be done before they could pour the foundation,” Bell said.

The expansion will include meeting and study rooms, a children’s area, a larger teen space, an adult space equipped with an electric fireplace and a coffee bar, a community garden, and an outside patio.

“We’re very excited because we’re going to be able to offer the community so much more as far as the kind of space that we’re going to have available for our patrons and the programming that we’ll be able to do with the expanded space is going to be great,” Bell said.

The completion date is for next summer, possibly in August.

“Because we’re getting an expanded building with an addition, rather than a new building, it actually takes more time to do that,” Bell said.

Background

In late July, the Scenic Regional Library Board chose Wright Construction Services Inc., St. Peters, to do the construction work for all of the library branches.

Wright Construction Services Inc. had the lowest bid at $1.3 million. The Warrenton and St. Clair branches will be expanded and the Sullivan, New Haven, Owensville, Pacific and Warren County branches will all get new buildings.

The new Union library and district headquarters is set to be built on ground near Pasta House on Highway 47 and is scheduled to be done by the end of 2018.

Groundbreaking ceremonies were held for new libraries in New Haven, Owensville, Pacific, Sullivan and Wright City earlier this year.

Branch Manager

Bell started as the library’s branch manager in August.

Bell formerly was an English and journalism teacher at St. Clair High School for nine years.

Before she and her husband moved to Missouri, she worked as a circulation clerk for several libraries, including a college library in Michigan where she handled interlibrary loans and periodicals.