Although Supervisor Dave Roberts is often presenting proclamations to city officials, community organizations and others in the community, it was the local leader who recently received a proclamation of his own.
Friends of the Solana Beach Library on Sept. 22 thanked Roberts with a proclamation for his part in the library’s pending renovations.
“San Diego County Supervisor Dave Roberts has been a valued member of Friends of the Solana Beach Library, and has given time and energy to support our efforts to ensure our library has the resources it needs to provide services,” Mary Frumkin, president of Friends of the Solana Beach Library, said while reading the proclamation.
At the recommendation of Roberts, the San Diego County Board of Supervisors allocated a total of $400,000 for library renovations. The board voted over a two-year period, Roberts said, to help fund the project.
At the time, Roberts said it was the largest grant that he had approved in his time on the board.
“I have to make tough decisions and prioritize resources, but I knew that this was a special project, and I knew that it needed resources to really be the pinnacle project that we wanted it to be,” Roberts said.
A Solana Beach resident, Roberts is a longtime supporter of Friends of the Solana Beach Library and once served on the organization’s board of directors.
He said he was “pleased” to be able to support the Solana Beach Library, which he called a “special place.”
“This is the wave of the future — doing joint-use projects and really working to create opportunities like this,” Roberts said. “It’s because of the people in the room here that we do things like this.”
After Roberts was presented with his proclamation, John Addleman, executive director of planning services with San Dieguito Union High School District, updated attendees on the renovation plans and schedule.
The Solana Beach branch of the San Diego County Library will be renovated as part of the reconstruction of Earl Warren Middle School.
In 2001, the 10,500-square-foot branch opened at Earl Warren. It is a shared-use library between the San Diego County Library and the San Dieguito Union High School District.
Improvements to the shared library have been planned in cooperation with the county, city of Solana Beach and the Friends of the Solana Beach Library.
As part of the Earl Warren reconstruction project, the district is rebuilding Warren Hall, a multipurpose room shared by the school and library. Now called “The Cove,” the space will be divided into two roughly 1,200-square-foot spaces.
Construction on The Cove started in July 2015 and is expected to be completed in April 2017.
Renovation plans also call include two new community rooms. Also called study rooms, the spaces are each about 250 square feet. The current 140-square-foot Friends bookstore will be expanded to about 377 square feet. There will also be new carpeting and a new painting scheme throughout the library.
The school district is currently working with library staff to develop a new memorandum of understanding that will give the county library control of the two new community rooms during library hours. The library will also have use of Cove 2, the section of The Cove closest to the library, during school hours. During non-school hours, however, the library will have access to both Cove 1 and Cove 2.
The spaces can accommodate about 60 people on either side, or a total of 120 people for both spaces. Larger events can be held at the school’s new multipurpose room, which can accommodate 300 to 350 people.
“As part of our MOU, the facilities just don’t stop with Warren Hall, they actually extend to the whole campus,” Addleman said. “So the county and Friends will have the same benefit as our parent-teacher groups.”
The library renovation project, which will be paid by a combination of Prop AA funds, county funds and contributions from Friends of the Solana Beach Library, is estimated to take four months. Addleman said the library will be renovated in such a way that the branch will remain open.
Improvements will start April 2017 by temporarily moving library staff and Friends of the Solana Beach Library into The Cove. In an effort to allow public access, construction will be phased, starting with the library lobby and Friends bookstore, followed by the eastern portion of the main library, the western portion of the main library, and finally, the community rooms and staff area. The project is expected to be completed by August 2017.
For more information about the Solana Beach Library, visit https://sdcl.org/locations_SB.html.