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Palatine library ready to show off renovations
Daily Herald Staff Report
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Published: 11/30/2009 12:10 AM

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The wait is over. Palatine Library's second floor renovation is now complete. To celebrate the new space, the library is hosting an Open House 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 5.

"We're already getting a lot of positive feedback," said Susan Strunk, director of Palatine Public Library District. "The trustees and staff are looking forward to showing off the redesigned second floor areas."

By repurposing staff space, the renovation has transformed nearly 5,000 square feet for public use. One of the highlights is a larger, 16-seat computer training lab created to accommodate the high-demand computer classes.

he room will be available for patron use when classes are not in session.

Three additional group study rooms have been added, making a total of five rooms suitable for small meetings. In addition, a small self-serve cafe provides a place for patrons to take a break with a snack or beverage.

"Through careful, long-term decision-making and saving, we have economically expanded public floor space within the Main Library's original footprint," said Carol Barnes, board president.

"The building was designed to accommodate a projected larger work force. With process improvements, use of technology and a flexible staff we were able to convert underutilized spaces into exciting new areas for the public. We are confident our patrons will take full advantage of these improvements."

The Open House will be a celebration with music and fun activities. Those who visit all the new spaces will be eligible for a drawing for Barnes & Noble gift certificates.

The library staff will also provide demonstrations of Encore, a new tool which will enable users to search the library catalog and subscription databases to find relevant results faster than ever.

The $880,000 project was planned within and funded by the library's special reserve fund. The architectural firm of Tilton, Kelly and Bell designed the revamped areas. Construction Solutions of Illinois were the general contractors.

Palatine Public Library District serves about 90,000 residents predominantly in Palatine and Hoffman Estates.