Amherstburg Library touted to be in disrepair

By Karen Fallon

In an effort to air his concern over the condition of Amherstburg’s historical Carnegie Library building, Ted Popel addressed council at the June 27 meeting.

According Popel the state of the 100 year-old library is both “Shameful and unacceptable.” The wash basin, notes Popel is held up with a “broomstick” and the washroom door is held shut with an “iron hook.”

“What kind of town, which has a solid library that has lasted 100, allows it to sit idle and decay?” he asked of council.

Popel made three requests: that council make a resolution to address the repairs. That a detailed building assessment and new professional concept drawings for an extension of the existing facility be undertaken and thirdly that a resolution reflect that council will continue to support the library for “future generations to enjoy.”

Councillor Carolyn Davies says that Popel made some “good points” and agreed that the heritage library is a wonderful building which reflects the history of the town.

Davies suggested that the library could possibly be the recipient of a “Friends of…” group.

A while ago an elevator was installed in the library at a cost in the area of $140,000 says  councillor Robert Pillon, who noted that he didn’t appreciate the allegations that council didn’t care about the state of the building.

“All the comments that people aren’t doing their jobs and that we are not doing our job,” said Pillon. “What I don’t like, it is painting a bad picture of our town. The press is going to go out of here and say that our library is crap and it is not a crappy library.”

“It is very expensive to keep up a heritage building and we only have so much money to do stuff,” he added.

The library group has recently done an inspection on the building, noted CAO Pam Malott.

As a result the facilities manager Tony DeThomasis has been informed by the group as to what they consider to be at issue regarding repairs.

As DeThomasis was on vacation for the June 27, meeting, Popel had been asked to delay his delegation until the following July council meeting so that the facilities manager could comment on the issues raised by the delegate, noted Malott.

According to the CAO a report will be forthcoming to council with recommendations on what could be considered short term improvements at the library which could be quickly expedited.

“As for long term items that may be of concern we will be suggesting a phased approach to council and that will be part of our budget discussions,” she added.

One response to “Amherstburg Library touted to be in disrepair”

  1. Fausto says:

    The Carnegie Library should last another 100 yrs and beyond. Residents should be aware the Mayor et al are conspiring to not only vacate the Carnegie building but also to sell off the old arena property and relocate whatever Civic operations he can out of the Town centre and over to the new Complex. That is, if he doesn’t first get expelled following the current mayoral investigation by the Ombudsman. Serious stuff.