News For Release
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, July 10, 2002
CONTACT:Colleen Rudy
619.236.7060
crudy@sandiego.gov

MAYOR AND MADAFFER ANNOUNCE PROPOSAL
FOR SAN DIEGO’S 21ST CENTURY LIBRARY SYSTEM

SAN DIEGO - Mayor Dick Murphy and District Seven Councilmember Jim Madaffer today announced an ambitious plan that will provide San Diego with a 21st century library system. The ten year plan calls for building 13 new libraries in the City and expanding nine existing libraries. When completed, Mayor Murphy’s Goal #7, which is to build a library system, will be accomplished.

"It is essential that we build a strong library system to provide information and educational opportunities to every citizen," said Mayor Murphy. "Libraries are a vital learning component in our communities, and this $300 million proposal will go a long way in making San Diego a city worthy of our affection."

The centerpiece of the library improvement program is a new, 378,836-square-foot Main Library in the East Village of downtown San Diego. This state-of-the-art facility will be located along the planned Park-to-Bay landscaped promenade that will link Balboa Park with San Diego Bay. The branch libraries will be connected to the Main Library by an on-line library catalogue and data base to share resources, and provide technology and information services to all citizens.

A series of meetings were held to determine how best to improve the library system. Following those meetings it was decided that new branch libraries will be built at Balboa, College Heights/Rolando, Logan Heights, Mission Hills/Hillcrest, North Park, North University, Otay Mesa/East, Paradise Hills, Point Loma, San Ysidro, Serra Mesa/Kearny Mesa, and Skyline Hills.

Expansion projects include Carmel Mountain Ranch, La Jolla/Riford, Ocean Beach, Otay Mesa/Nestor, Pacific Beach/Taylor, San Carlos, Scripps Miramar Ranch, South University Community, and Tierrasanta. The plan calls for branch libraries to have a minimum of 15,000 square feet in order to provide meeting rooms, computer labs, separate areas for children and teens, as well as house other amenities of a modern branch library.

"Library patrons and supporters have been eagerly waiting this day when we announce that building our new library system is finally happening," said Councilmember Madaffer. "This is a major milestone and is the beginning of a new era for San Diego when this City shows its commitment to investing back in our neighborhoods and downtown by building a new library system."

In early 2001, Mayor Murphy asked Councilmember Madaffer to partner with him to develop an approach to successfully build and improve the library system. Councilmember Madaffer chairs the Council’s Natural Resources and Culture Committee that oversees library issues, among other responsibilities. It is through this partnership that this ambitious proposal grew.

The City’s Library Commission will discuss the plan at its July 12th meeting. The Mayor has scheduled the City Council to vote on the plan at its July 30th meeting. The City expects to complete a financing plan for the approximately $300 million project this fall.

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