The Moorhead Public Library, in conjunction with the City of Moorhead, is exploring options for a new library, which may be housed in a combined Library/Community Center. The goal is to build a new library facility in a vibrant, visible location, providing a welcoming space for Moorhead residents to attend programs, events, and meetings, and find abundant opportunities for lifelong learning, civic engagement and creative pursuits.
Why Does Moorhead Need A New Library?
The Moorhead Public Library has served the community for over a century and has been located downtown at 118 Fifth Street South since 1962, with an expansion in 1988. The current facility is facing structural problems in addition to inadequate space to meet community needs, issues which were illustrated by a Community Needs Assessment which was conducted in 2021.
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Project Background and Progress
In 2017 The City of Moorhead commissioned a Facilities Condition Assessment of all city-owned facilities. This study, which appraised the current condition of all city-owned facilities, notes several inadequacies of the current library facility including HVAC, plumbing and lighting.
The City Council kickstarted the process to establish a half-cent local sales tax. That measure would fund a mixed-use civic building anchored by a new public library and community center.
In order to prepare for this process, the library partnered with Library Strategies Consulting Group to conduct a broad-based community needs assessment, which included a professional analysis of the current facility’s physical limitations and other shortcomings hampering the library’s day-to-day operations and effectiveness.
As part of the Community Needs Assessment, the Library Strategies Consulting Group conducted a community survey to gather public input and help the library guide its services, programs and other priorities for the coming years.
Mayor Shelly Carlson appointed an 11-member force to further study and possibility of a new downtown library and community center. The task force is currently working on developing conceptual ideas for the project along with a vision for the new facility.
The City Council voted unanimously in favor of placing the question of a half-cent sales tax to fund a regional library and community center on the November 8, 2022 election ballot.
The question of a half-cent sales tax to fund a regional library and community center will be placed on the November 8, 2022 election ballot, coinciding with the 2022 general election.