November 4 Communication with Park District and Board President Statement

From the Board President Jason Brandt:

The Helen Plum Library continues to firmly believe that building a new library at its current location, adjacent to Lilacia Park, benefits the Park, the Library and the Lombard downtown area, and honors Col. Plum’s original vision of his donation to Lombard. The Library Board also recognizes that it has been several years since the referendum passed with the intent to build a new library building and we need to move forward with that task.

On several occasions, the Park District has brought up the concept of the library building at the Lombard Common as a possible alternative. Because our two governmental bodies (the Library and the Park District) have not been able to find a mutually agreeable plan for the Library to build on the Library’s current property, we did recently offer a land swap proposal for 3.25 acres at the southwest corner of the Lombard Common. The Park District Board rejected that offer.

To recap where we currently stand, in late 2018, after multiple design revisions were submitted to the Park District for consideration, the Library presented the community with detailed design plans for a two-pavilion building at the current location on Maple Street that does not infringe on the Park’s property or air rights. Those plans were well received by Lombard residents. The only detail that prohibits us from presenting the construction plans for the two-pavilion building design to the Village Plan Commission is the Park District’s approval of a shared access drive to the Coach House located in Lilacia Park.

Moving forward, the Library Board plans to meet with the Park District Board regarding an offer they provided on November 6, 2017, to see if a compromise can be achieved that will meet the needs of both parties. Due to the long delay of trying to come to a mutual agreement with the Park District, the Library Board will also be exploring the possibility of acquiring the Mr. Z’s property as a future location for the library building. This property has its own set of restrictions and issues but could provide a viable alternative location for a new library building.

All correspondence and details of the ongoing negotiations between the Library and the Park, as well as the design plans for the two-pavilion building, are available on our Next Chapter website: www.helenplumnextchapter.org.

Thank you for your patience while the Library Board and staff continue to work toward bringing the Village of Lombard a new library the community can be proud of, that will provide quality library services for decades to come.

Sincerely,
Library Board President
Jason Brandt


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