Josephine Community Library has announced the commencement of construction on its Illinois Valley Library renovation project in the US.   

A ground-breaking event for the project was held last week. 

The development, which has been in planning since 2021, will see the library’s space increase from 4,264ft² to 5,764ft².  

The renovation will include a seismic retrofit, a new roof, and the installation of energy-efficient fixtures. 

The expansion plans for the library have been designed by ZCS Engineering & Architecture. 

Ausland Group, having won the public construction bid, is set to carry out these renovations. 

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The upgraded library will also feature a new community room with a teaching kitchen, an early learning centre, a maker space, and a science, technology, engineering, art and maths outdoor education area.  

Josephine Community Library director Kate Lasky said: “After years of planning and fundraising, we’re finally putting shovels to dirt. 

“Our new branch library remodel and addition is more than just bricks and mortar; it’s a testament to our community’s dedication to growth and learning.” 

Funding for the project comes from a joint Community Development Block Grant with the City of Cave Junction and American Rescue Plan Act funds allocated by former Oregon Representative Lily Morgan. 

The project has also received funding through a 2021 crowdfunding initiative and private grants from philanthropic organisations. 

Construction is expected to be completed by late 2024.

A community grand opening and celebration event will be held to mark the completion of the renovation project. 

With the library currently closed for the remodel, patrons have been directed to the other branches in Grants Pass, Williams, or Wolf Creek for services such as computer access, Wi-Fi, programmes, and book browsing.