CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - In just a few months, Charleston County will boast a brand new library for the first time in more than twenty years.
In 2014, 70% of voters approved a referendum to spend $108.5 million for improvements.
Toni Lombardozzi is the project manager for Charleston County Public Libraries.
“I've been a library user since I was a little one myself and this is like a dream job for me,” she said. “It was loud and clear the Chas county citizens wanted some more library facilities. We know our facilities are getting a little dated so we wanted to be sure to improve those.”
13 libraries will be renovated with those tax funds; 5 brand new libraries are under construction.
Wando Mt Pleasant library, adjacent to Wando High School, will be the first to open by mid-June.
“There will be a lot of new things compared to when we were growing up in our libraries,” Lombardozzi said.
The 40,000 square feet will house meeting rooms, makers spaces, a digital media studio and tons of public use computers plus computer classes.
“We have everything from basics- how to start out using a computer. All the way up to really advanced Wxcel classes and how to make fantastic power points, how to use Snapchat.”
One of Lombardozzi’s favorite elements in the Children’s are of the new library are window seats built into the wall. They'll have cushions, so kids can curl up with a good book and see outside.
Last month, we noticed $196,000 spending on library materials on the Charleston County check registers. “Of course our book have to come from somewhere! So for many, many months they've been diligently working behind the scenes to makes rue we have all the books and DVDs to fill this space for our patrons.”
The finishing touches are in progress from top to bottom.”We're just super happy to be able to bring this to the community.”
Two targeted rapid-growth areas: Wando Mt. Pleasant and one in West Ashley off Bees Ferry Road.
Three outdated libraries will be replaced with new buildings: the North Charleston, James Island and Hollywood branches.