$14 million Southwest Regional Library under construction - WDRB 41 Louisville News

$14 million Southwest Regional Library under construction

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- More than 100,000 books, a teen center and a large children's room -- those are just some of the amenities that will be at the new Southwest Regional Library.

It's the biggest expansion of the Louisville Free Public Library system in years. On a cold and dreary day, the project is moving along with beams and cranes. Once completed, the new library will be 40,000 square feet on one floor with lots of windows and skylights for plenty of natural light.

Craig Buthod, the Director of the Louisville Free Public Library says, "We've got about 50-55 percent of steel structure up and roof overhead. Roof deck has begun. We are now making progress that will speed our progress. So once you have a roof overhead, there is a lot you can do inside under that."

Mayor Greg Fischer, Congressman John Yarmuth and Metro Council members came out to the site to see the progress of the $14-million project.

"This is the only large capital project that our administration has been able to do so far and I want to do one with the theme of lifelong learning. Any great city is going to be a city of learners, and libraries represent that. Libraries are being used more today than in their history. They are job centers for many people as well," Fischer said.

"This library serves a population of more than 100,000 people within a five mile radius. This library will replace the library we have in a rented space. We are in a shopping center just south of here," Buthod said.

It's expected to be twice the size of the existing branch.

The master plan for the library system is to also build locations in South Central and Northeast Louisville.

But right now the focus is on getting the Southwest Regional Library finished. The library will have state of the art technology with touch screen computers, more than 100,000 books, and community spaces.

The Southwest Library is expected to be completed at the end of the summer.

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