This past week I finally made a point and took the time to visit Collingwood’s new public library.  Notwithstanding the fact that numerous details remain to be finished on the exterior, the library has now been open for a couple of weeks and by all accounts is receiving a positive response from the public. 

Libraries have often been the focal point in many smaller communities and hopefully ours will continue to be as well. The exterior stills lacks some final touches but overall, the faux heritage look fits in well with the downtown core.  Overall, I sensed a much more intimate feel on the inside as the interior dimensions seemed to create the feeling of a much smaller space than what the three storey exterior would suggest.  The children’s area is well done and overall the building offers ample space to sit and relax in bright sun filled spaces.
  Perhaps it’s a bit early to tell but I was anticipating more “gallery” space throughout the building that would serve to feature the work of local artists. As a budding artist myself I have always enjoyed viewing the various paintings that often graced the meeting room in the old library and this was a facet of the new building that I had hoped would be expanded.
This building came at a significant cost and there have been times when I questioned whether or not the municipality should be spending the money given the town’s increased debt.  In this day and age of digital print media and devices such as Amazon’s “Kindle” and Apple’s new iPad, you really have to question the wisdom of spending millions on the bricks and mortar inventorying and delivery of reading materials. 
Every effort should be made to leverage this facility to its fullest extent the potential for which goes far beyond the loaning out of books.