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Library nearing completion but still no date for opening

December 18, 2020   ·   0 Comments

The new Tottenham branch of the New Tecumseth Public Library is nearing completion, however there is no confirmed date when the building will be open to the public.

Town staff could only say “it is looking like an early 2021 opening.”

The new 5,200 square foot facility is located at the rear of the Tottenham Community and Fitness Centre on Queen St. N.

It replaces the Pam Kirkpatrick branch that was located in the Tottenham Mall.

The library was moved to the mall location and renamed in 2009 after the old library building on Queen St. was determined to need to many safety upgrades to remain viable.

Construction of the new library building got underway in March of 2019, and went through several delays.

Originally, it was hoped the building would be completed by January 2020, however that was pushed back early in the project when the contractor building the library requested a later start to avoid costs of working in the winter.

The project was again delayed earlier this year and a new date of March 31 was anticipated as to when the new building would be ready to occupy.

The date was again pushed back in February with an estimated opening of June 2020, when the town announced a “significant delay” due to the structural steel supplier and installer and their “lack of performance.”

The delay caused the general contractor to absorb additional costs in the project.

Building was again delayed at the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic when the Province suspended non-essential construction activities in March. Construction resumed with the easing of Provincial restrictions on construction projects.

The Pam Kirkpatrick branch of the library closed in September as staff prepared to move to a temporary location in the Community Centre.

A miniature branch of the library was set up in the Community Centre’s youth room.

The construction of the new library is costing the Town around $1.65 million.

By Brian Lockhart
Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

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