A Brief History of our Building

  • The Helen M. Plum Memorial Library opened in 1928 in a home bequeathed to the Village by Colonel William Plum.
  • In 1963 a new 12,000 square foot two-story Library opened on Maple Street.
  • In 1978, a 22,300 square foot addition to the Library was completed, creating the current Library building of 34,300 square feet. Voters approved a bond issue and an increase in the operating tax rate in 1976, the last time such approval was given.
  • In 1999, Library Planning Associates, Inc., developed a space needs study in February 2001 that called for 79,000 square feet, which would have provided enough room for the Library for at least the next 20 years.
  • The Library Board held two referenda at the March 16, 2004, primary election. The questions sought voter approval to increase property taxes for a home valued at $200,000 to $11.50 per month. These funds would pay for the construction cost, furniture and equipment, fees, surveys, and reimbursement for purchase of the property next door and a permanent tax increase for operations.
  • Neither of the referenda passed, although more than 40% voted in favor of the new building and increased funding.
  • In January, 2010, the Helen Plum Library converted from a Village library to a district, an independent unit of local government.
  • In May, 2010, a $500,000 reorganization and remodeling project was completed to address the need for quiet space on the 2nd floor and more streamlined circulation and materials processing.
  • In the summer of 2012, the Lower Level auditorium area was remodeled at a cost of $200,000. The Library was awarded a Live and Learn Construction Grant from the Illinois State Library in the amount of $50,000 for this project.
  • The brand new Robin’s Nest early literacy center, a place where children can begin to learn about language through play, opened in 2015. Funds for this project were made available due to the generous legacy of Carol Ann Robbins, a teacher from Lombard, who left a donation in her will to create the Edgar Lewis Robbins Family Fund, earmarked for the children’s department.

One thought on “A Brief History of our Building

  1. You are throwing away money and losing prospective residents to towns with better libraries ….Build a new library. …

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