Good News on Library Compromise Proposal

It’s hard to argue that Walnut Creek doesn’t need a new library. If the misguided plans for a large bond measure and multi-story garage are off the table, we don’t have to. … Walnut Creek needs a new library – and the City has come up with sound alternatives and the means to pay for them. … To qualify for possible state bond funds and to generate “legacy” donations from private citizens, the new library has to be a good deal larger than the one we have now. But the City is looking to shave several million dollars off the cost by cutting down on the parking (much of which would have served surrounding businesses at a cost to all Walnut Creek property owners). … These proposals are hardly set in stone, but they are similar to the path some of us have argued for from early on (see my Aug. 21 post, “In a Perfect World”). A tentative alternative that would put about 170 parking spaces in a single-story below-ground lot and a small surface parking area is perfect. The library could stretch out to the corner of Lincoln and Broadway, greatly enhancing the area and a new civic plaza near the senior center would magically turn into an ice rink in the winter. Should state bond money not come through (and that could easily happen, judging on the way things are going with bond funds up in Sacramento these days), the library could be financed through a modest increase in parking fees. These proposals are exactly the compromises many folks were looking for early last year and here at we’re ready to encourage city leaders wholeheartedly that this is the right way to go. … Please join us. …

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