Published: Sep 04, 2012 07:00 PM
Modified: Sep 01, 2012 06:11 PM
CARRBORO - The Board of Aldermen is narrowing the list of potential sites for Orange County to consider for its new southwest library branch.
The board is looking at seven or eight sites, including three off N.C. 54, one near Jones Ferry Road and one near the town cemetery on Fidelity Street.
A renovated Carrboro Town Hall and property owned by former Alderwoman Frances Shetley near Martin Luther King Jr. Park are also being considered.
The Orange County Board of Commissioners will decide the site of the new library. It will replace the Carrboro Branch Library in McDougle Schools and the Cybrary at the Century Center, which are not full-service libraries.
In August 2011, the county commissioners rejected a proposed site at 210 Hillsborough Road near Carrboro Elementary School because of legal issues and its location in a residential area.
Orange County and Carrboro leaders have disagreed on what kind of location would best serve southwestern Orange County residents.
Some Carrboro aldermen want the library in downtown Carrboro.
“The library shouldn’t be a separate trip for people,” said Alderwoman Randee Haven-O’Donnell. “They should be able to do shopping and other services in one trip.”
Alderman Sammy Slade said a site near a bus line would make the library more sustainable for the town.
“A library that is accessible from public transportation encourages biking and walking, instead of requiring that people get to it by car,” he said.
But some county commissioners have said a suburban location with ample parking would better serve patrons who drive.
In March, the Board of Aldermen voted to remove street visibility from its recommended criteria and revise the criteria for on-site parking. The aldermen also voted to give higher priority to public transportation access, centrality, site cost, and community preferences.
The county commissioners will vote on final library criteria this month.