Finishing the vision

Mike Moore photo
Mandy Irwin of Casper-based Air Innovations remodels the HVAC system in the Glenrock Library basement June 4. The library will nearly double its square footage by finishing the basement.

Mike Moore

A group of children huddle around a computer work station as grown men and women walk past hoisting bundles of building materials, ladders and other construction necessities.
Libraries are traditionally quiet, peaceful places for patrons to lose themselves in a good book, get a bit of work completed at a computer or simply relax and browse stack after stack of books.
With the Glenrock Library undergoing a remodel phase that will span the summer, library staff and customers are releasing their quiet stronghold to the will of construction workers knowing good and well that in the end, it will all be worth it.
Early this spring, Pope Construction out of Casper was awarded a bid to remodel the library with work beginning in May.
Converse County Library Director Cindy Moore says the remodel of the Glenrock library is something they had envisioned well before the library’s construction in 2015, but never expected to be in the position they currently are to go ahead and set the project in motion.
The project is funded through unused money remaining from the construction of Douglas’ new library that began a year after Glenrock’s wrapped up.
With the leftover money readily available, the library board opted to go ahead and improve the library for future generations to enjoy.
Since the money is leftover from the previous project, Moore says the sprucing up of Glenrock’s library doesn’t cost taxpayers a dime.
“It’s not costing anybody anything,” she assured. “It’s unbelievably remarkable and a long time in the making.”
Current costs for the renovations are over $1 million, and a final price tag won’t be known until the library irons out the furnishings, fixtures and equipment that will fill the new spaces.
“We’re still working on that part,” Moore said.

Renovations aren’t exactly common for buildings just reaching their fourth year of operation, yet, Glenrock’s library is already outgrowing its current facility.
“Our spaces were just not big enough for the traffic that we get in this library,” Moore said.
What is currently a “tiny” children’s space, will have the majority of the western side of the main floor that is sectioned off and more secure.
“We’re going from a tiny little space where you can’t even get all the story time kids in one area to a much larger space that is also going to be a little bit protected from anyone that walks in the door,” Moore said. “The kids deserve a place to run around. I think it’s going to be cool.”
Additionally, they will have a dedicated quiet reading room and a maker’s space similar to what is present at Douglas’ library, equipped with a cleanable floor suitable for messy, creative events to expand public offerings.
One of the biggest changes is the conversion of the basement area. This space was used solely for storage in the past, but is now being converted to a usable area that will almost double the facility’s square footage.
The basement will include dedicated areas for young adults with big screen televisions, gaming stations, and other amenities to create a cozy atmosphere for teens to interact.
“Right now they’re just in a corner,” Moore noted of the current facility. “Now they will have their own area.”
The basement will also have meeting rooms, a movie room for programming or public use, staff area and will house a majority of the library’s books.
“We’re taking the space we have and optimizing what we have and enlarging some areas,” she said. “Glenrock has an incredible library here. For the size of community, it’s a pretty nice library.”
The need to grow stems from well-attended programs and high circulation numbers.
“We have a really active library  use community,” she said.
Other changes include additional security upgrades to keep patrons safe while visiting and a few convenience changes. The meeting hall in the old library building next door will be accessible via key cards, bringing convenience as library staff can give those who utilize the meeting hall a key card so staff don’t have to come down and unlock the door for them.
Bringing the necessary infrastructure changes to meet the public’s demand was a no-brainer, she said.
“It’s an investment in the community,” she said. “We thought, ‘You know what, we have the money let’s get it done so that we can serve the patrons in Glenrock as well as we do in Douglas.’”
The project is expected to be completed this September, barring any hurdles in construction this summer.


Glenrock Independent

Physical Address:506 W. Birch, Glenrock, WY 82637 Mailing Address: PO Box 109, Douglas, WY 82633 Phone: (307) 436-2211

The Glenrock Independent is located in the Bronco Building

Office hours: Monday, Wednesday, Friday - 10:00 a.m. to 2 p.m. Tuesday, Thursday - 9:30 a.m. - 1:30 p.m.

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