Library Landscapes Campaign Nearing Completion

library_landscape

Library Landscapes Campaign Nearing Completion

Drake Community Library’s “Converging Landscapes,” a capital campaign for the library’s urban prairie, continues to grow, with only $15,000 remaining on the $90,000 goal for the landscaping and sustainability project.

Ground work began last summer when the fundraising also got underway, and 2015 is expected to record both completion of the fundraising and the remaining landscaping work.

VanTomme Concrete and Landscaping of Grinnell has been engaged for Phase II of the project which could be accomplished in early June, weather permitting.

Library Director Marilyn Kennett describes this year’s work as, “addressing surface water concerns, creating accessibility, and enhancing the prairie learning environment.”

“The library grounds can be a gateway to the prairie, providing an outdoor educational experience in our urban environment.  The plan is balanced, in that it appreciates our community’s prairie heritage while recognizing the need for a more conventional streetscape appearance.   We are finding that we can be both environmentally responsible and provide a pleasing landscape for everyone to enjoy,” said Kennett.

The focus for this summer’s work will be on the southeast corner of the library property.  The plan calls for improving entry into the prairie from the south terrace and from State Street via several features.  Two small permeable paver landing areas will be installed at the base of the terrace steps to accept water from the terrace.  The water will be directed to a bioswale which will further filter excess water and prevent heavy rains from reaching the stormwater system.  The bioswale will be densely planted with prairie dropseed, a species of native prairie grass.

A limestone stepping path will flank the bioswale, leading library patrons down to a permeable paver patio with park bench.  The park bench will offer a stopping point for pedestrians crossing from State Street to the library parking lot.  Permanent signage will highlight information about the native species and conservation practices used on the property.

“We have worked over the last several months to refine the landscaping plan to meet the needs of the land and present the south prairie as a showcase and learning environment for the community.  We believe the plan meets our overall goals of environmental sustainability and simplifies maintenance while increasing opportunities for learning, both outside and inside the library,” said Paul Pohlson, president of the library board of trustees.

The $75,000 raised to date includes more than $64,000 in private gifts, a $5,790 grant from the Poweshiek County Soil and Water Conservation District, and $5,000 in hotel/motel tax dollars recognizing the library as an economic development tool and community gathering place.  The library was the venue for 850 meetings with 15,094 attendees in FY14.

This summer’s work will be accomplished with minimal disruption to the established prairie.  Access to the library parking lot will not be affected during the anticipated period of construction. The Phase II landscaping plan is available at the library and on the library’s website at www.grinnell.lib.ia.us/landscape.

Drake Community Library is partnering with the Greater Poweshiek Community Foundation (GPCF) to facilitate the acceptance of donations to the “Converging Landscapes” campaign.  The Claude W. and Dolly Ahrens Foundation provides back office support services to GPCF through the foundation’s Community Support Services program.

 

Individuals who wish to contribute to “Converging Landscapes” may send checks to Greater Poweshiek Community Foundation with “DCL Landscape” in the memo and mail to GPCF, P.O. Box 344, Grinnell, IA 50112.

 

Members of the Drake Community Library Board of Trustees are President Paul Pohlson, George Britton, Dan Covino, Jordan Esbrook, Gail Greenwald, Katherine McClelland, and Karen McNally. The trustees welcome input from the community regarding all aspects of library services.

Drake Community Library’s “Converging Landscapes,” a capital campaign for the library’s urban prairie, continues to grow, with only $15,000 remaining on the $90,000 goal for the landscaping and sustainability project.

Ground work began last summer when the fundraising also got underway, and 2015 is expected to record both completion of the fundraising and the remaining landscaping work.

VanTomme Concrete and Landscaping of Grinnell has been engaged for Phase II of the project which could be accomplished in early June, weather permitting.

Library Director Marilyn Kennett describes this year’s work as, “addressing surface water concerns, creating accessibility, and enhancing the prairie learning environment.”

“The library grounds can be a gateway to the prairie, providing an outdoor educational experience in our urban environment. The plan is balanced, in that it appreciates our community’s prairie heritage while recognizing the need for a more conventional streetscape appearance. We are finding that we can be both environmentally responsible and provide a pleasing landscape for everyone to enjoy,” said Kennett.

The focus for this summer’s work will be on the southeast corner of the library property. The plan calls for improving entry into the prairie from the south terrace and from State Street via several features. Two small permeable paver landing areas will be installed at the base of the terrace steps to accept water from the terrace. The water will be directed to a bioswale which will further filter excess water and prevent heavy rains from reaching the stormwater system. The bioswale will be densely planted with prairie dropseed, a species of native prairie grass.

A limestone stepping path will flank the bioswale, leading library patrons down to a permeable paver patio with park bench. The park bench will offer a stopping point for pedestrians crossing from State Street to the library parking lot. Permanent signage will highlight information about the native species and conservation practices used on the property.

“We have worked over the last several months to refine the landscaping plan to meet the needs of the land and present the south prairie as a showcase and learning environment for the community. We believe the plan meets our overall goals of environmental sustainability and simplifies maintenance while increasing opportunities for learning, both outside and inside the library,” said Paul Pohlson, president of the library board of trustees.

The $75,000 raised to date includes more than $64,000 in private gifts, a $5,790 grant from the Poweshiek County Soil and Water Conservation District, and $5,000 in hotel/motel tax dollars recognizing the library as an economic development tool and community gathering place. The library was the venue for 850 meetings with 15,094 attendees in FY14.

This summer’s work will be accomplished with minimal disruption to the established prairie. Access to the library parking lot will not be affected during the anticipated period of construction. The Phase II landscaping plan is available at the library and on the library’s website at www.grinnell.lib.ia.us/landscape.

Drake Community Library is partnering with the Greater Poweshiek Community Foundation (GPCF) to facilitate the acceptance of donations to the “Converging Landscapes” campaign. The Claude W. and Dolly Ahrens Foundation provides back office support services to GPCF through the foundation’s Community Support Services program.

 

Individuals who wish to contribute to “Converging Landscapes” may send checks to Greater Poweshiek Community Foundation with “DCL Landscape” in the memo and mail to GPCF, P.O. Box 344, Grinnell, IA 50112.

 

Members of the Drake Community Library Board of Trustees are President Paul Pohlson, George Britton, Dan Covino, Jordan Esbrook, Gail Greenwald, Katherine McClelland, and Karen McNally. The trustees welcome input from the community regarding all aspects of library services.

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