2015: The Latest on a NEW San Carlos Branch Library
JULY, 2015: The 40th anniversary of the San Carlos Branch Library rekindled within the community the burning question, “When will our new branch library, envisioned over twenty years ago, be built?”A group of committed citizens has been meeting for the last four months to research the answer to that question.
Committee Members and area residents include April Boling (C.P.A.), Rita Glick (Branch Managing Librarian), Jerry Hotz (SCFOL Treasurer), Sue Hotz ( SCFOL Board & Publicity Chair), Michael Lugo (retired architect), Judy McCarty (past SCFOL President and former 7th District Councilperson), Ann McDonald ( past SCFOL and FSDPL President), Katherine Nakamura (Member San Diego Library Commission and Past School Board Member), Judy Williams (current SCFOL President), Jay Wilson (Executive Director of MRRP and member of Navajo Community Planners), Michael Winer (representing the family of Past SCFOL and FSDPL President Jack Winer), Mickey Zeichek (Immediate Past President of San Carlos Area Council).
Here is an update on the status of our new branch library as of the July, 2015, Committee Meeting.
- Two representatives of the Land and Water Division of the CA Department of Environmental Health reviewed with the committee the mitigation and environmental approval status of the Golfcrest & Jackson lot. Mitigation is on-going and will continue in the indefinite future; however, they feel that the lot is ready for building the new library when the City is ready to do so.
- Misty Jones, Director, San Diego Public Library system, gave her complete support to the project, and is anxious to see it completed as the Flagship branch library in the 7th District.
- 7th District Councilperson, Scott Sherman, confirmed that funds are available to purchase the lot, and to complete the design phase of the building. He and his staff will be investigating funding sources to build our new branch library, and is excited to see its completion while he is a Council member.
- Cynthia Meinhardt, Project Officer II, Public Works/Engineering, is working on contracts needed to proceed with the project. Design contracts should be ready within several months.
- David Pfeifer, Principal architect with Domusstudio reviewed the branch’s design history and presented some unique new design ideas. The library’s design must be re-evaluated as the Library’s and Community’s needs have changed over the last twenty years. The new design is for a 25,000 square foot building that will be the Flag-ship library for the 7th District. Many of you may remember working with David on the “old design.” Only the old design is currently on the website. We will post updates as they become available and there will be opportunities for community input.
- Katherine Nakamura gave a visual presentation summarizing many of the community’s needs and desires for the new design. These concepts were an accumulation of community verbal input to committee members as well as our visits to many other libraries to see what worked, and what didn’t.
- Cost and financing: The final design and construction start date will determine the final cost and financing needs. Current estimates run around twenty million dollars.
- We are always open to donations. Please contact any of the Committee Members if you would like to donate to our new branch library.
“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful and committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.” –Margaret Mead
The San Carlos Branch Library Building Committee is committed to keeping the Community updated as progress continues toward reaching its goal.
JANUARY, 2015: The Navajo Canyon Community has been anxiously awaiting the building of a new, larger, San Carlos Branch Library since the days of Jack Winer in the 1990s. At last, there may be a new glimmer of hope. In the spring of 2014, City Councilperson Scott Sherman held a meeting with representatives from the San Diego Public Library Capital Improvements, SCFOL Board, and the San Carlos Community, where he reiterated his support, and architects presented a new San Carlos Branch Library design that would approximately triple (25,000 sq.ft. vs 8,200 sq. ft.) the current branch size, and additionally add space for community activities. The building would be located on the corner vacant lot, with the current lot used for additional parking. It should be noted for area newcomers (or those who may have forgotten), that the corner lot at one time was an ARCO station. It has been undergoing mitigation (removal of residual underground toxic substances) since the station’s removal. The process is expected to last another two years. Building cannot proceed until the process is complete and it has been declared clean by the appropriate government department.
The following excerpt was taken from the January 8, 2015, San Diego Public Library Branch Capital Improvement Projects Overview.
“San Carlos Branch Library
This project provides for the acquisition of a lot adjoining the existing branch library located at 7265 Jackson Drive and building a new 25,000 square-foot library. This project is part of the 21st Century Library System/Library Department Facility Improvements Program.
Preliminary design began in Fiscal Year 2004. Bridging document development began in Fiscal Year 2008 and will be completed in Fiscal Year 2015 pending receipt of $1.0 million of Deferred Capital Bond funding. Total project is estimated to be $20.6 million; however, the cost and schedule (including construction) will be revised once additional funding is identified.
The project schedule was updated. Report to City Council #13-088 identifies this project to receive $1.0 million of Deferred Capital funds for Fiscal Year 2015. The total project cost was also updated to reflect an increase of $11.3 million. In addition, there is another $140,000 in DIF funding available in Fiscal Year 2016 from the Navajo community. The construction phase is currently unfunded.
Current Projected Cost of the Project: $19,598,000
Quote from Misty Jones, director for the San Diego Public Library:
“The completion and opening of the new Central Library caused such a buzz and really renewed excitement in the community surrounding libraries. I am thrilled that we are now able to focus on the needs of our branch libraries. Recent City infrastructure bonds funding has been allocated for four new branch library projects. The Library is proud to be such an integral part of the City of San Diego’s economic recovery and support our neighborhoods through life-long educational endeavors and community engagement.” ”
The San Carlos Branch Library is one of four new branch libraries slated to be built. The others are Skyline Hills, Mission Hills-Hillcrest, and San Ysidro. According to a January 11, 2015 article in the Union-Tribune, page B-1, it’s not clear what the source of the $20 million needed to build our new branch will be. Groundbreaking is expected to begin in 2018, but lot mitigation and/or financial considerations may affect the start date. Please be aware that neither the new branch library design of 2007 as it appears on this website nor the one on the new corner sign, is the final design.
Please help us to continue the campaign for a new San Carlos Branch Library by joining SCFOL. Remember, MEMBERSHIP COUNTS!