Elevator in historic library improves accessibility, opens up new opportunities for new programs
FULTON (September 13, 2010)—State Sen. Darrel J. Aubertine today visited the Fulton Public Library to see the new elevator purchased as part of a project to improve accessibility, for which he secured a $50,000 legislative grant.
“We’re so thrilled with the Senator’s help in making the library’s elevator dream come true,” said Marion Stanton, president of the Fulton library’s board, noting that the elevator now gives the library the option of opening up unused space for new uses, ensuring the library has room to grow. “It could never have happened without his help. It will be so important to so many people.”
Construction on the project began almost a year ago and the elevator is now in service. The elevator serves all four floors, including the basement space, in the 105-year-old Carnegie building. At tower was constructed on the backside of the building to accommodate the housing for the elevator.
“It has given adults and children access to areas they couldn’t get to before,” said Penny Kerfien, library director, adding that prior to the elevator, staff would get books for people who could not access them, but now these patrons can peruse the entire selection of books available. “Because of the 22 steps, if there are mobility issues, they couldn’t go down or up the stairs. We are very grateful for the Senator being a library supporter, not just to us, but the whole area he serves.”
“I very much appreciate the Senator obtaining this grant for us,” said Sharon Guyer, trustee and secretary for the library board. “It’s allowing everyone in our community to use this library.”
In 2008, a legislative grant secured by the Senator in the amount of $30,000 paid for new lighting and windows in the library, which have reduced energy use, saving the library money.
“I’m proud to have had the opportunity to be a part of these great projects by helping to secure this funding, but the truth is that these projects happen because of the hard work and commitment of the library board and employees, the volunteers and this community,” Sen. Aubertine said. “Libraries help bring our communities together and they provide the resources we all need to continue learning throughout life from childhood on.”