Tuesday, October 27, 2009

The Bidding Will Start at...

(Hopefully, this empty lot will soon be our new central library.)

For some people, it's action movies. For me, my thrills come from city council meetings. I attended today's session to support getting an updated construction bid for a new central library. The ninety-minute session was a nail biter, with Carl Demaio asking tough questions of whether library funds could be instead be used to pay down the Petco Park debt, and Tony Young wanting to ensure that local construction companies get the work. In the end, the council voted 6-2 in favor of keeping the library project moving.

During the public comment session, it was humbling to hear people speak. There was SDPL Foundation's Chair Judith Harris, the Friends of the SDPL's President John McAllister, and a former Executive Officer from the New York Public Library--people who've dedicated a good portion of their lives to libraries. And then there were students from a local charter school, one of whom said she didn't want to be in college by the time the new library was built. This construction bid is no guarantee that the library will be built. But, least for today, the hard work of these people has not been in vain.


Polly said...

Over here, libraries are closing, which is a huge shame. I wonder, however whether they reach the people they need to reach. The kids in our school who don't read would not be taken to a library by their parents either. I wonder what the answer is.

Michelle Panik said...

It's such a complicated issue. I think though, at some point, you can't force someone to read. The people who want to go to the library will.