Lakewood Library Remains Closed For Repairs

Lakewood Memorial Library remains closed following the discovery of leaks in the roof earlier this year. Officials hope the library can reopen by August. Submitted photos

LAKEWOOD — Lakewood Memorial Library remains closed following the discovery of several leaks in February.

Library officials decided to replace the roof and conduct major repairs to the interior of the building, located at 12 W. Summit St. “Once we’re sure the building is secure from future leaks, we can address any other major repairs that might be required, such as replacing the carpet,” the library’s board of trustees said on the library’s website. “The last step in the process will be bringing back all our books and reshelving them — no small task in itself.”

Shannon Taylor, library director, said while multiple projects are still underway inside, the roof has successfully been replaced. She said the cause of the leak was penetration onto the roof from the previous installation of an HVAC unit.

“The rooftop unit was not installed properly back in 2008, so it just unfortunately had been collecting water for all these years and finally released out into the interior,” she said. “We’re switching to a ductless split system so that we don’t have any penetrations onto the roof anymore.”

By switching to a ductless split system, Taylor said there will be nothing on the roof besides some solar panels, which do not penetrate the roof of the building.

The library does not currently have an official timetable for the completion of the repairs.

“There is not an official timetable yet,” Taylor said.“I was optimistic for the end of this month, but it sounds more likely it will be some time next month.”

Although the library remains closed, it’s still offering a variety of programs and opportunities for the community.

“While we are closed we are providing story times at Good Neighbor Bookstore on Wednesdays at 11 a.m. and we have a booth at the Lakewood Farmers and Artisans Market on Thursdays, where we have a book sale, activities for children, and provide the latest library news,” Taylor said.

The library’s summer reading program is also going on now. Taylor said the theme this year is “Oceans of Possibilities.” Prizes will be awarded for the participants that log the most minutes before the deadline on Aug. 27.

Taylor said there are two ways for participants to log summer reading minutes. Participants can either register online at http://lakewoodlibraryny14.readsquared.com or pick up a reading log from the Lakewood Farmers’ Market on Thursdays between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m.

The first place prize for each age category for the summer reading program is a membership to the Niagara Falls Aquarium.

Next month, the library plans on hosting a cookie decorating event, scavenger hunt, day with the Audubon, and a magic show. Each of these events will take place on Tuesdays at 11 a.m.

Taylor said the library has a substantial impact on the community.

“We offer the enrichment programs and educational opportunities. We also have digital literacy with our computer classes. We have the arts enrichment,” she said.

The current cost of the building repairs is $361,299. The library’s insurance is covering $133,000. The library has applied for construction aid through the state and is looking for other grants to help cover the remaining balance.

“The financial impact is pretty significant right now,” Taylor said.

The library hopes to get back to serving the community soon as the building nears completion.

“The biggest thing for us is we just want to be able to be back open and see all of our patrons again,” Taylor said.


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