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Douglas library looks to expand

Michael Schneider

The Douglas County library in Minden may receive close to $750,000 to expand by about a third and to increase its parking.

On Thursday commissioners will consider authorizing the money to put in another 3,500 square feet of library space and about 30 more parking spaces.

Linda L. Deacy, library director, said there is urgency in her request. In order to receive a 47-percent federal grant match, Douglas must have a certified county match by January.

Commissioners had been delaying a library decision until the issue of the County Complex was resolved. Commissioners were searching for a place to consolidate county services under one roof. The Bentley Nevada land on Buckeye Road had been considered, along with other sites, but recently the county decided to purchase the Minden Inn to use as an eventual complex.

Because the county will use a bond issue to pay for the inn, funds that had been set aside for a county complex purchase are now available for projects such as library expansion, according to Deacy.

The expansion would be paid for with $224,000 in county funds, $159,000 in federal grant funds and $51,000 in library reserves.

The parking lot expansion would cost another $320,000 in county funds.

Deacy said the expansion is needed.

“This library was built 20 years ago,” Deacy said. “The valley population has gone up since then.”

The Douglas County Library at Zephyr Cove serves about 7,000 people and has about 10,000 square feet of space.

The Douglas County Library in Minden serves about 33,000 people with about 11,000 square feet.

Deacy told horror stories of how students from nearby Douglas High School and the Douglas Western Nevada Community College congregate at the library after school.

“It’s literally standing room only,” she said. “There’s not another inch of room.”

If commission approved, the expansion would be set aside from the rest of the library by glass and would serve as a quiet area for studying and computer work, Deacy said.

Deacy hopes construction can start as soon as the ground in Minden thaws next spring.

n Commissioners will also consider changing zoning on county maps to allow for Heavenly Ski Resort expansion.

The areas the resort wishes to develop are currently zoned as residential.

The county’s planning commission has already approved the zoning changes. Heavenly would use the land for skier services, a children’s activity center, a restaurant, a bar, a theater/convention area and other retail and residential uses.

Tahoe Daily Tribune E-mail: tribune@tahoe.com

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