Local public libraries granted construction funding - NEWS10 ABC: Albany, New York News, Weather, Sports

Local public libraries granted construction funding

ALBANY, N.Y. – Assemblyman John T. McDonald III announced that Cohoes, Troy and Waterford Public Libraries have been awarded more than $95,000 combined in public library construction funds.

The funds will be used for renovation projects, handicap accessibility upgrades and energy upgrades. The grant funds are from $14 million in capital funds for public library construction provided in the 2012 State Budget.

A recent survey showed a documented need for public library construction and renovation projects totaling more than $2.2 billion. More than 48 percent of the over 1,000 public library buildings in communities across New York are over 60 years old. Another 30 percent are more than three decades old.

Many of New York's local public libraries are unable to accommodate users with disabilities, are energy inefficient, cannot provide Internet and computer and other electronic technologies to users because of outdated and inadequate electrical wiring, and do not have sufficient space to house the library's expanding collection, address the need for adequate meeting room, or provide for public access computers.

Project activities and expenditures eligible for grants from the $14 million Public Library Construction Grant Program include financing construction of new library buildings, construction of additions to existing buildings, and the renovation and/or rehabilitation of existing space, including roof replacement, purchase and installation of alternative energy resources and new HVAC systems, windows, doors, and lighting systems, electrical upgrades, and construction of new or replacement of old walkways and parking lots, among other things. New furniture, shelving and equipment, including computer equipment, can be purchased for new or newly reconfigured or renovated space. Renovations designed to provide accessibility for patrons with disabilities is a high priority.

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