February 2010 Building Update: Building the Foundation
The Rifle Branch Library is going up! We’ve poured the footings and stem walls and are currently working on the elevator and stairwell cores. The parking structure is also underway with the footings beginning to be poured in early February. How can we pour concrete in the winter? General Contractor Adolfson and Peterson (A&P) is using a Thawzall machine that warms the ground to 60 degrees to ensure a good temperature for concrete. Steel will follow shortly and the building will soon begin to really take shape. A sneak preview of the interiors is being hosted at the temporary Rifle Branch Library at 139 West 3rd on February 10th from 5 to 7 p.m. as part of the Rifle Chamber of Commerce’s Business After Hours series.
One of the things that we are most pleased about is the number of local subcontractors we are able to work with in this project. With the majority of the subcontractors awarded, Rifle has 69% of the subs from the Western Slope and 48% from Garfield County. Parachute did slightly better with 75% of the subs from the Western Slope and 50% of those from Garfield County. There are still a few things in the works that have yet to be bid. We will keep you posted on the final numbers as they come in.
The Library District is in the process of selecting a radio-frequency identification (RFID) vendor for self-check-out, inventory, circulation and security, as well as self-service for reservations on computer and print systems. We interviewed four companies and will offer self-check-out at all six libraries by the end of next summer. We are also preparing to release a Request for Qualifications for solar power on the project. We received a grant through the Garfield New Energy Communities Initiative to purchase photovoltaic (PV) cells for the roof of the building to help offset the electrical use. We are aiming for a PV system of 30 to 50 KW on the new Rifle Branch Library and 8 KW at Parachute. Both systems will serve as educational opportunities for the community to see PV in use at a governmental facility and the libraries will have interactive computers that will allow the public to see both production and usage numbers.
Parachute is also underway. If you’ve been by lately you might have noticed some gaping holes in the building. We are adding on a 4,000 square foot area on the east side of the building and a 200 square foot vestibule on the south side. The addition will serve as the new reading area with teen and adult fiction, non-fiction, magazines and newspapers as well as lounge chairs, study tables and a fireplace. Adult and teen computers will also be available in this part of the building. Most exciting about this remodel is that the former adult reading area is being repurposed into a 100-person meeting room with a kitchen that will be available for library events and community meetings.
If you are interested in a naming opportunity in association with this project, I encourage you to contact me to set up a meeting. Donations are being accepted for various furnishings and upgrades as well as naming opportunities for meeting rooms. The Friends of the Parachute Branch Library have already designated funds to purchase the hearth and fireplace. Contact me by email at email@example.com or call me at 970-625-4270 to discuss our donor program. I welcome your comments and support!
-Amelia Shelley, Executive Director