The new Grandville Community Commons and expanded branch of Kent District Library will be officially dedicated on October 8 at 9:30 AM with a ribbon cutting and recognition of this important community gathering and learning space. The ceremony features comments by State Rep. Mark Huizenga, Grandville Mayor Steve Maas and library officials. Self-guided tours of the facility will be available to the public in conjunction with the Grandville Fall Fest celebration taking place October 8 and 9.
The expansion adds more than 6,665 square feet to create a total of 25,337 square feet of state-of-the-art library and community space. This dedication coincides with the new neighboring outdoor farmer’s market pavilion. The building is owned and operated by the City of Grandville and houses the public library, which is operated by Kent District Library. Fishbeck served as architect and construction manager of the project.
Steve Maas, Mayor of the City of Grandville & Campaign Co-Chair said, “Our Grandville library has been the heart of our community for as long as I can remember. It has been an oasis of peace, a spot where students meet to study, a place where our children have grown in their love of reading, a resource of knowledge, a space where friends can gather and a great venue for very cool special events. With this library expansion and renovation, our community's heart has been expanded so even more people can enjoy this amazing gateway to knowledge.”
The dedication completes this $5.6 million capital project that began in 2018, funded by the City of Grandville and the generosity of local donors. The Grandville Building Beyond Books campaign was co-chaired by Steve Maas, Diane Troost, Barb Nienhuis and Lee Cook, with Vern Boss and Jim Buck serving as honorary co-chairs. The dedication includes special recognition of Boss and Buck, as both of these life-long community servants passed away before completion of the project.
Hosting more than 250,000 visits each year requires a lot of flexibility, particularly in keeping pace with the growth of the community. Activities that were previously limited by the facility now have room to grow. In the past ten years, Grandville Branch circulation increased more than 30 percent and annual program/outreach attendance surpassed 17,000, which is a 36 percent increase. Summer Wonder, KDL’s summer reading program, has attracted a 93 percent increase in participants.
The expanded and updated facility includes:
- 6,665 square-feet of new multi-function space on the west side of the library with a large, divisible community room for hosting library programs and serving as a space for city, community, business and nonprofit events;
- Ten new private study rooms to accommodate individuals and small groups seeking a quiet meeting space;
- New Nelson Foundation Disability Resource Room;
- Access to more than one million library items that are available for free checkout;
- Hundreds of regularly scheduled in-person programs and activities for all ages throughout the year;
- Separate and enclosed space for children’s programs and early literacy efforts;
- Drive-up book drop;
- Larger space for the Friends of the Grandville Library Book Nook;
- Fireplace lounge area separating the library from the new community center;
- New, high-efficiency HVAC system;
- Additional restrooms, including a family restroom.
“Kent District Library is honored to be a member of the growing Grandville community,” said Lance Werner, Executive Director of Kent District Library. “This expansion enables us to be an even greater resource of information, ideas and excitement.”
The first Grandville Library operated as a bookmobile service. In April 1952, the Grandville community established its first library in the renovated quarters of the former pumping station on Maple Street and later moved to the city hall complex.
“Growth can only be built on the shoulders of generous and visionary people, such as with the addition to the Grandville Branch of Kent District Library,” said Diane Troost, Campaign Co-Chair.
Special thanks to Griffin Walker, a boy who was one of the first donors. He pledged $6 and raised it himself. He is especially excited about the new fireplace.
The library, located at 4055 Maple St. SW, is open seven days per week, except during the summer when it’s closed on Sundays, and provides 24/7 digital access at kdl.org.