Monday, March 5, 2012

The MLK Jr. Library's Future

Sketches from the report detail how
additional stories would be constructed
Back in November, the Urban Land Institute was charged with assessing the viability of the MLK Jr. Library's continuing presence at its current location.  The report outlined three scenarios for consideration, but did not make a recommendation one way or the other.  These scenarios are:

  • The library stays where it is but leases excess space to another entity (and potentially adds another two stories on to the building);
  • The library stays where it is and uses all of its space ("not feasible," per the study); or
  • The library moves to another downtown location (of about 225,000 square feet, though that assumption is up for review as well) and the building is sold.
Based on the report, the DC Public Library will begin an in-depth analysis next month to determine the feasibility and costs of these plans.  "The analysis is the next step in a long process that will help us figure out how to make the District's central library a spectacular place for residents," said Ginnie Cooper, chief librarian of the District of Columbia.

The analysis will take about six months, and even then the results will simply be "used to continue the conversation on the future of the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Library with residents, city leaders and other stakeholders," per a news release from the Library.  In short, and as is often the case, we won't see any movement on this for some time, but we'll keep you posted.  

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