Community

Hiawatha Public Library expansion groundbreaking set for Monday

Hiawatha Public Library photos

A rendering by Fusion Architects Inc. of the updated Hiawatha Public Library, 150 W. Willman St. in Hiawatha. A groundbreaking ceremony is scheduled for 4:45 p.m. today
Hiawatha Public Library photos A rendering by Fusion Architects Inc. of the updated Hiawatha Public Library, 150 W. Willman St. in Hiawatha. A groundbreaking ceremony is scheduled for 4:45 p.m. today
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HIAWATHA — The Hiawatha Public Library is breaking ground Monday, Oct. 1, for its $4.1 million renovation and expansion project after reaching the $2 million fundraising goal in July.

Hiawatha Public Library, one of the busiest libraries in the state, has outgrown its space.

The $4.1 million, 13,500-square-foot library expansion and renovation will more than double the 8,500-square-foot library, built in 1998 at 150 W. Willman St. The expansion includes an information center with 15 computer workstations, two study rooms and spaces for youth, tweens and young adults. The project also will add space to accommodate crowds at programs and community gatherings.

Progress toward the capital campaign goal of $2 million will be revealed and lead donors recognized on Monday during the groundbreaking.

Library officials said the groundbreaking provides an opportunity to share updates on the project, which has the support of residents who passed a November 2017 bond issue for the library and the support of local government and donors who have contributed funding.

Officials said the library improvements will have a positive impact for patrons from Hiawatha, Cedar Rapids, Robins, Alburnett, rural Linn County and the entire Metro Library Network.

Support for the library has come from many sources, including $400,000 from The Hall-Perrine Foundation. AEGON Transamerica Foundation donated $300,000 and Crystal Group gave $100,000.

The Linn County Supervisors, Carver Charitable Trust and Farmers State Bank also have made donations of $50,000 or more.

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Other funds include a $1.2 million bond approved by voters last fall and $1 million in local-option sales tax from the city of Hiawatha.

Leaders of the project and campaign attending the event will be Hiawatha Mayor Bill Bennett; Brenda Powers, Hiawatha Public Library board of trustees president; Jeaneal Weeks, Hiawatha Public Library director; and Dave and Bridget Castelluccio, capital campaign co-chairs.

The winner the “What would you do if you spent the night in the library?” teen essay contest also will share her/his essay during the event.

l Comments: (319) 398-8318; trish.mehaffey@thegazette.com

IF YOU GO

l What: Groundbreaking ceremony for $4.1 million renovation, expansion of Hiawatha Public Libray

l When: 4:45 p.m. Monday, October 1

l Where: Adjacent to the Hiawatha Public Library, 150 W. Willman St., Hiawatha

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