Thank you for the questions and comments you submitted during our public consultations from August 10-16 on the plans for the Central Branch renovations. The plans for the exterior have now been approved by Kingston City Council and our heritage permit has been granted. We are finalizing the details for the interior floor plans and working on design items such as colours, furniture and flooring. Many of the questions we received during the consultations were about interior items, and we are pleased to answer some of them below. Some of them have already been answered in our frequently asked question section, and we’ll update that to add these responses this week. Have a question that hasn’t been answered? Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or fill out our web form.
How many computers will be in the building?
There will be roughly the same number of computers that we have now.
As is our current practice, we will have computers in the adult, teen and children’s sections of the building. We are currently planning for 6 adult computers on the first floor in the marketplace. There are an additional 4 adult computers on the second floor in the non-fiction learning commons, located near the local history and genealogy area.
Two computers will be located in the children’s area, as well as some iPads loaded with apps that build literacy, numeracy and problem-solving skills.
The teen area will have three computers.
In planning for the number of computers, we look at current and anticipated usage and best practices for the numbers of computers per capita. We do have the ability to add additional computers if there is demand when the branch opens.
Use of our wireless Internet with patrons’ personal devices such as smartphones and laptops has grown, while demand for library computers has decreased. We are increasing the spaces where people will be able to plug in easily and work comfortably using their own devices.
Why isn’t the program room closer to the children’s collection? Is it safe to have the 3D printers in the same room as the children’s programs?
The enclosed programming space is going to serve people of all ages, not just children. This makes placement of the space a little tricky, as while we want it close to the children’s area to encourage children and caregivers to use the children’s area and to borrow materials, we also don’t want crowds of people having to travel through our children’s area on their way to and from adult or teen programs. We also want to highlight some of the programs happening in the library to encourage others to join in or find out more information, so we wanted it to be as visible as possible, while minimizing the costs involved in constructing walls. We believe we have achieved that with the placement of the program space.
We are trying to make our spaces as flexible as possible. We will be able to separate the programming space into two smaller spaces with a moveable partition, allowing us to run two programs simultaneously or offer one larger program. Any equipment in the room that could pose a health and safety concern to members of the public, such as the 3D printers, will be properly secured.
Is there a service desk on the second floor? What about staffing for the children’s area? There are no sightlines from the main desk to the children’s area.
Yes! There is a service desk on the second floor. It will be located at the top of the new stairs, close to the elevator. We have positioned it here so that staff can greet patrons as they arrive on the second floor and will be able to assist them in finding what they are looking for. Its location at the threshold of the non-fiction and learning commons area also ensures there will be less disruption to people trying to study quietly when library staff are assisting other patrons.
There is a service point noted on the plans between the adult fiction and children’s area. A staff member will use this desk as their base to serve patrons in both of these areas. There is another service point located just outside the teen area that will serve the marketplace and teen area. These service points are in addition to the main desk near the entrance.