Oxford’s Lane Library is about to get a new modernized home on Locust Street, occupying Walmart’s former space. The new building will stand two stories tall and will address complaints of cramped space at the Lane Library’s current location on 15 S. College Ave.
The new building is slated to open in June 2015 after an estimated $8 million worth of construction is complete.
Miami University sophomore Evan Bader, who grew up in Oxford and has been a visitor to Oxford’s Lane Library since he was young, said he hopes the new library building will be able to accommodate technology that most modern libraries already have.
“It didn’t have the space for the resources we need now, like computers and other technology,” Bader said.
“In my opinion, the Hamilton branch usually had more books and didn’t run out of popular ones as quickly as (the Oxford branch) did, so I’m wondering if the additional space will bring in more books to the Oxford branch,” Bader said.
Interior designer for SPH Leading Design Jenny Gallow said she believes the new library creates a flexible environment to serve the Oxford community.
“We tried to create different spaces within the large, open plan, that would serve different functions,” Gallow said.
“The new library will have three study rooms, a large meeting room with seating for up to 80 people, a dedicated Children’s Story Time Room, and different seating arrangements for individual or group work,” Gallow said.
There will be many new expansions to the previous library, Gallow added.
“The first floor will have bar height seating, a lounge and cafÃ© area, a separate teen room, and the children’s department,” Gallow said. “The children’s area will feature interactive games and activities to promote literacy through play.”
The second floor of the new branch building will house the “Living Room,” which will feature mobile tables and soft seating under a large skylight.
“We wanted an overall environment that could serve the different needs of library users,” Gallow said.
Branch Manager of the Oxford Lane Library Rebecca Smith said the needs of library patrons simply can no longer be met at the branch’s current location on South College Avenue.
“We have currently maxed out our space at this location and we need to expand,” Smith said.