May saw the triumphant opening of the Sardis library to serve the growing population on the south side of town.
“Libraries are also important for fostering a love of books and reading, and for developing curiosity about the world around us,” Mayor Gaetz told the crowd at the groundbreaking.
She quoted Dr. Seuss, one of her “favourite” authors, for inspiration: “The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn the more places you’ll go.”
Gaetz also credited the “tremendous work” on the project by members of council, staff, FVRL board and staff, “and of course the countless people in our community who are so passionate about libraries and our city.”
The design-build team of Titan Construction and Craven Huston Powers Architects created a sustainable design for the $2.5 million building, geared to conserving natural resources, reducing costs and creating a high-quality environment.
The total library project budget was $3.4 million, including costs like brand-new books, and landscaping.
Features of the 10,600-square-foot building near Twin Rinks include a multi-purpose space accessible after library hours.
City officials saved up to pay for the library-building project in advance with their pay-as-you-go philosophy, rather than financing it over the long term. Update: It may mean that the Chilliwack budget was feeling the financial pinch this budget year, heading into the first full year of library operations, but it was expected. The brand-new facility has seen solid numbers come through the doors so far, according to city officials.