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Montgomery County Libraries Nationally Recognized with 2016 Top Innovator Award

For Immediate Release: Monday, October 24, 2016

Montgomery County Executive Isiah Leggett announced that Montgomery County Public Libraries (MCPL) has won the prestigious 2016 Top Innovator Award from the Urban Libraries Council, an organization that represents the largest library systems in the country and Canada.

 

“I am extremely proud of our library system and its Library Director Parker Hamilton,” said Leggett.  “And I appreciate the fine work done by the Department of General Services in refreshing the buildings. This program ensures that our libraries have the flexibility and direction to continue to be a vital part of our community in the 21st century while saving taxpayers millions of dollars.”

 

MCPL won the award for its groundbreaking program to “refresh” library buildings as an alternative to completely rebuilding them.  Under the former way of working with library buildings, it would take 32 years and $203 million to renovate 16 Montgomery County library buildings as allowed under the County’s current Capital Improvement Program (CIP) budget.

 

Under the “refresh” program, the total cost would be $20 million for all 16 libraries.  In the 32 years it would take to renovate each branch once, each branch could be refreshed three or four times.  The entire process generally takes about 18 months, with a branch closed for only five to seven months, as opposed to multiple years under the traditional approach. Twinbrook and Kensington libraries are the first branches to have gone through the refresh program. 

 

Those refresh program provides:

  • updated technology updated, for staff and the public;
  • new furniture;
  • improvements to the infrastructure with modernized restrooms and new electrical and data outlets;
  • new carpeting and painting;
  • improved access for people with mobility issues;
  • important preventive maintenance like roof replacement, lighting retrofits and replacement of electrical or heating systems.

 

Hamilton said the “refresh” program “will make certain that our libraries will be open and available for our residents with better facilities while we make certain MCPL is keeping up with new requirements from our residents and new advances in technology.”

 

For more information on the refresh program or to tour the recently refreshed branches contact Regina Holyfield-Jewett at 240-777-0106.

 

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Release ID: 16-439
Media Contact: Judy Stiles 240-777-6536