Economic Growth Revives Wake Library Projects

Oct 8, 2013

An artist's rendering of the Northeast Regional Library planned for Raleigh.
Credit Streamside Perspective / Wake County

Commissioners in Wake County have started the process of reviving construction projects for new libraries.  The board voted Monday night to revisit plans for a regional library in northeast Raleigh. 

The county drew up a design in 2007, but construction was postponed during the recession.  Voters passed a $45 million bond that year for library projects across the county, but commissioner Phil Matthews suggested this week that staff members should review population growth before going ahead with other plans in Garner, Cary and Fuquay-Varina.

"There are other areas in the eastern and western part of this county that maybe don't have quite the density, but they're taxpayers," Matthews said.

"And as we represent the citizens throughout this county, we ought to make sure everybody is treated fairly and equitably, because if they're paying for the bonds, they need to have an opportunity."

Commissioner Paul Coble also asked planners to study whether they could add a voting site at the Raleigh library, which the county wants to build at the corner of Forest Pines Drive and Green Elm Lane. 

"Instead of going out and looking for spaces, it would seem that we would start building spaces in our own libraries if we're going to be involved in construction," Coble said.

"It doesn't take a lot of room.  My polling place is not a large city facility.  It just has two large rooms to it."

The library is expected to cost $5.7 million.