Testing underway at library site

Crews have conducted environmental tests at the site of Summerland’s new library branch.

Crews have conducted environmental tests at the site of Summerland’s new library branch.

Construction is expected to begin this summer on the new branch, on Main Street at Kelly Avenue.

The building will be at the site of the existing Summerland Arts Centre and the Giant’s Head Automotive buildings.

While the automotive repair business was once a fuel station, municipal planner Ian McIntosh said the last owners had received an environmental report when they purchased the property.

“They have a certificate of compliance which says it’s clean,” he said.

The Okanagan Regional Library has conducted environmental tests on the site to determine if further work is necessary before construction begins.

Results of the testing were not available by press time.

The new library building will be around 743 square metres, more than twice the size of the existing library branch on Wharton Street.

Summerland’s present library building was constructed in 1981. The building is 316 square metres, less than half the size required for a community of this size. Access is difficult for some since it is on the second floor of the building

Michelle Rule, communications manager for Okanagan Regional Library, said the design of the new building has not yet been determined.

In 2013, there were 70,203 visits to the branch. There are 6,381 registered users.