Historical Growth 1981 2013
Volumes 168,365 342,849
Public Computers 0 69
Meeting Room Use Per Year 110 4,183
Annual Circulation 593,123 1,448,958
Average Visitors Per Day 600 1,600

There are many steps we must complete in the coming months. Those steps are:

1. Summer 2014: Property Negotiation
We are currently working with the property owners of the proposed site for the new Appleton Public Library; Trinity Lutheran Church and Fox Banquets. As Mayor Hanna has said, the City of Appleton will purchase the properties only if all parties agree to sell. If there is no agreement to sell, the process for this site ends. The negotiation process includes:

  • Resolution of Necessity
    The resolution states what properties the city is looking at purchasing, and for what reason. The Appleton Public Library must request to approve the resolution through Common Council.
  • Property Appraisals
    The City of Appleton will obtain an appraisal of the properties, giving the property owners the opportunity to obtain their own appraisals at the expense of the city.
  • Relocation Plan
    The City of Appleton must prepare a document call a Relocation Plan. The plan provides an indication of other payments to which the property owners are entitled.

2. Summer/Fall 2014: Concept and Budget Development
The concept and budget development will be presented for decision by the Appleton Public Library Board of Trustees September 16 at 4:30 pm.

3. Fall 2014: Budget Adoption
The Mayor's 2015 budget will be published October 1 and will include a capital budget for the library.

The planning process began in 2008 with a Building and Services Study. All recommendations from that study that could be accomplished in the existing facility have been completed. A Program Design Study was completed in 2009 that included space needs for the library of the future. From 2012 to 2013, we completed extensive community-based strategic planning, resulting in our long-term vision and strategies.

Finally, during the spring of 2014, architectural firm Engberg Anderson was hired to update the 2009 Program design Study, which meets the defined goals of the 2013 strategic plan. Based on the assessment completed by Engberg Anderson and extensive property evaluation completed by library staff, the Library Board of Trustees voted unanimously in favor of the recommendation to move forward with a more in-depth evaluation of site 3C - the existing Trinity Luther Church and Fox Banquets & Rivertyme Catering sites.

Based off of the 2013 community-based strategic plan, APL 150, the current facility does not meet the needs of the community. As the library strives to fulfill its mission and vision, the facility is falling behind on standards for contemporary urban libraries.

• Safety and security are issues in the current building that can be addressed by innovations in library building design.
• The current facility did not have any computers when it was built. We currently have 69 public access computers and limited options for expansion.
• Limitations of the current facility do not allow for the volume and types of meeting space that a modern library requires.
• Patron parking spaces are often blocked by delivery vehicles due to inadequate space for loading and unloading library materials.
• The costs of changing library spaces are considerably higher because of the inflexible infrastructure.

A 21st century library is a community-planned, people-friendly place for discovery, inspiration, learning and gathering. In a new building we can:

• Create flexible space, built to change as library services evolve.
• Meet modern technology needs of the community.
• Increase the visibility of downtown area and provide economic development.
• Provide more programming space with accessibility after library hours.
• Enable library visitors to be creators rather than just consumers.
• Furnish collaborative spaces.

The site was selected after months of stakeholder interviews, research and test layouts. A decision matrix was created for the site evaluations. This matrix includes 15 categories of criteria and was structured to not allow one criterion alone to impact the final result.

Inspecting the decision matrix for site evaluations should give you a sense of the depth of evaluation we used when making a final site recommendation.

Absolutely not. Mayor Hanna has stated that if the property owners decide not to sell their properties to the City of Appleton, then the process for the proposed site will end. Both properties have openly stated that they are willing to begin conversations about the library in the proposed location.

The total cost for the proposed site and new library facility is estimated at just under $37 million. By comparison, a remodel and expansion of the current facility is estimated at just over $32 million.

A cost projection matrix has been created for the five sites originally under review by the Appleton Public Library. The cost projection matrix includes 11 categories with associated costs. Also included in the matrix are costs for an additional Parks and Recreation space. Costs for the Parks and Recreation space is presented separately from costs for library space.

The City of Appleton has put placeholder figures into the budget to help fund the library project through 2017. A percentage of the estimate building cost would have to be funded by private donations solicited by the Friends of Appleton Public Library. The Friends are conducting a feasibility study this summer to determine the amount of private dollars that can be raise in the Appleton Area.

Every site required consideration for access and parking. There is no site proposal that assumes that the library could just be inserted in that location without any modification.

The City of Appleton is in the middle of a downtown traffic and parking study. With the library in the proposed future location, we can help solve long-standing issues because traffic and parking solutions would serve to benefit the community.

Branches are expensive to operate and Appleton is not big enough for this to be cost-effective. The convenience comes at a higher cost of multiple buildings to heat and cool, duplicated staff functions, extra equipment, additional copies of materials, transportation costs and more.

You can find all of the information pertaining to the process, including our strategic plan, program design study and more on this website. We also welcome questions and comments in-person, via email at info@apl.org or by phone at (920) 832-6170.

In addition, we have board meeting the public is welcome to attend. The schedule for upcoming board meetings is:

• August 25, 4:30 pm: Informational Building and Equipment Committee Meeting
• September 16, 4:30 pm: September Library Board Meeting

We will also be available for questions and comments at the August 30, September 6 and September 13 Downtown Appleton Farm Markets, located in Houdini Plaza.