Re: City should consider “fresh alternative” to library plan – Campbell River Mirror Nov. 9, 2020
This letter is in direct response to the letter written by Dan Samson of the Cedar and Cypress Property Group, printed in the Campbell River Mirror.
Kudos to the group for bringing the issue of the new library forward once again. While we certainly agree with them that the current mayor and council should be applauded for their commitment to invest in the downtown core, we also would like to reiterate their request that the city reconsider the location of the $14 million investment for a new library.
In a statement from an article printed Oct. 28, 2020 where Mayor Adams is quoted, “This 14 million is the Vancouver Island Regional Library Board’s money,” the Mayor continues. “If we choose to say ‘No, we don’t want it,’ they will take that 14 million – as they have for the past eight years and build a facility elsewhere on Vancouver Island.”
Hold on! Did anyone hear anyone suggest that the City of Campbell River say “No” to the new library? Of course not. Residents have expressed concern vocally and in writing to mayor and council since August and perhaps earlier that the new library would be better placed in a different location. No-one has ever suggested saying no.
While the money may, in fact, be coming from the Vancouver Island Regional Library board, the taxpayers of Campbell River have contributed dearly to the library with their property taxes.
As the Cedar and Cypress group indicated, “the existing library building, which would likely cost in the 2.5 million range to replace, would be preserved and could be repurposed for the art gallery. As well, a further $1 million cost to the city to demolish the existing building would not be spent. How can this not be a win-win situation for all concerned?
It only makes sense to utilize facilities that we currently have. There is no need to tear down a perfectly good building, leaving the citizens of Campbell River once again without a library, under the current proposal.
Prior to breaking ground, or buildings, there is no shame nor is it ever too late to have second thoughts.