North County Library’s on-site expansion in doubt

By Debbie Carson, Online Editor

SEBASTIAN — Money that could have been used to buy land next to the North County Library has been diverted to a new library at the Indian River State College campus.

A few months ago, the Indian River County Board of Commissioners discussed purchasing land adjacent to the library for the future expansion of the popular library but negotiations of the price stalled.

“I don’t think it’s going to happen,” said Library Director Lynn Walsh, of the North County Library. Tom Frame, the county’s general services director, said that after negotiations stalled in trying to acquire the adjacent property, the county then pursued a partnership with Indian River State College to provide a public library on the school’s campus.

The county used library impact fees, which could in part have been used to buy the land in Sebastian, to purchase materials for the Brackett Library. Other funding for the new library came from grants and the college.

As for the North County Library, both Frame and Walsh said that the facility can continue to function as is and that even if the county had purchased the land, there were no immediate plans to build.

“It’s not that it couldn’t happen,” Frame said of the county buying the property – provided that the land were still available and the price were agreeable and the funds were there.

The county is now considering the possibilty of purchasing property elsewhere in North County to build a new, larger library in the years to come to replace the current library.

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North County Library by the numbers

Original size: 17,000 square feet, when built and opened in 1990Current size: 25,445 square feet, when expanded in 2002.No. housed materials: 131,150No. registered patrons: 19,502Amount of items borrowed in June: 33,282No. patron visits in June: 19,247

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North County Library information

Address: 1001 Sebastian Blvd.Phone Number: (772) 589-1355Hours: Mon.-Weds. 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.; Thurs. & Fri. 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.; Sat. 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.; Sun. Closed.

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