More parking for North Port Library
SED was contracted by Sarasota County to design and permit the much needed additional parking spaces for the North Port Library. We are pleased to see this project come to fruition.
NORTH PORT — After discussing the item for a few years, Sarasota County and Sarasota County Libraries announced the expansion of North Port Public Library’s parking lot, hoping to better accommodate patrons’ parking needs at the busy branch.
A total of 23 additional parking spaces will be added along the frontage road between the library and Tamiami Trail/U.S. 41. The expansion, which is currently out for bid, will be made of pervious pavement, allowing stormwater to move through the surface. Also, crews will redo pavement in one section of the existing lot, alleviating draining issues that typically lead to flooding.
County Commissioners are expected to vote on the item at either its December meeting or when the board reconvenes in January. If OK’d, Brad Gaubatz, the county’s capital projects operational manager, said construction may take up to four months, placing the completion timeline around spring 2017.
Due to the competitive bidding climate, Gaubatz said an estimated cost cannot be released.
Sarabeth Kalajian, director of Sarasota County Libraries, said the need is great for increased parking. She said during special events, the lot quickly fills up and people resort to parking in spaces that “aren’t exactly spots.”
“Normally, the library is crowded,” she added. “But it hosts lots of events that pack the parking lot and we have to look for a safer way for people to park.”
A sidewalk, street crossing and parking lot lighting is included in the project. To fit within the alloted depth, Gaubatz said the new lot will be designed at a 30-degree angle, which is not typical or as efficient as some, but will be “very convenient.”
The county working with the city of North Port to finalize a maintenance agreement for the parking spaces.
Kalajian said ground-breaking for North Port’s second library, a 20,000-squarefoot facility located at the new Suncoast Technical College campus off Interstate 75 and Toledo Blade Boulevard, is slated for Friday, Sept. 29. Both facilities will open in fall 2017.
The new library, she said, will be a diverse project.
It will be “serving both the students and the general population,” she said.
By JONATHAN SCHOLLES
Img photo credit and courtesey of: Windemere Homes Inc