on July 7, 2016 by test_editor in Archive_2016, July, Print Articles, Comments (1)

July 7, 2016: T’was Always Thus…; Citizen input on Rosemount Library.

July 7, 2016: T’was Always Thus…;
Citizen input on Rosemount Library.

By Blaine Marchand.

“Today, despite its small size, Rosemount serves thousands of users.”

For 98 years, Hintonburg area residents have not been shy about voicing their points of view. The Rosemount Library is a good case in point. The library came into existence thanks to a petition circulated by residents of this area in the second decade of the 1900s. This petition was then submitted to the municipal Library Board with a request that a library be located in the west end of Ottawa.

Citizens wanted then Ottawa Mayor Fisher to request $15,000 from the Carnegie Library Fund in New York so an appropriate building could be built. The Mayor refused, but he was over-ruled by city council. And so, an application was dispatched and handily agreed to by the Fund.

Fast forward to 2016. Residents of Kitchissippi ward are advocating for their beloved Rosemount Library. This time it is to expand and improve the current Rosemount facility. Over 200 library users participated in four consultation sessions and responded to an on-line questionnaire this past spring.

The consultation was facilitated by the Rosemount Expansion and Development group (READ) – concerned citizens and community associations, working with Kitchissippi Councillor Jeff Leiper.

Together they are working the Ottawa Public Library Board (OPLB) to find solutions.

Quite clearly, as the comments received illustrate, Rosemount Library remains one of Ottawa’s best-loved branches. This is the case today as it was with earlier generations. As back then, its location in the heart of Hintonburg facilitates vibrant partnerships with the local schools, community organizations and residents.

In the early days of the Library, there were frequent reports on the growing volume of books borrowed. Today, despite its small size, Rosemount serves thousands of users. Its book circulation per square foot is the second highest in the city’s library system. The downside of the popularity of the almost 100-year-old institution, is cramped space with little room for programming, community meetings, computer use or even browsing for books and other materials.

T’was always thus. In the beginning of the 1930s, discussions among residents focused on building an addition to the building. In spite of the recession, City Council agreed to a $4,000 addition. In 1982, renovation upgrades cost $330,000 but no space was added. The comments gleaned from the recent consultations and on-line survey clearly demonstrate that the community appetite to allocate monies for an expanded space remains strong.

Space limitation was the top concern expressed by participants in the recent consultations. They want a building that meets their needs in the 21st century. Discussions included renovating the existing space, renovating and expanding the existing space and relocating the library to a site which must be near its current location.

The report on the community consultations “Rosemount Library: The Next Chapter” will be available on the READ website, www.readrosemount.ca and Councillor Jeff Leiper’s website, http://www.kitchissippiward.ca/ shortly.

Look for READ tables at various community events throughout the summer. Your views are most welcome.

For more historical information on the Rosemount Library see Dave Allston’s wonderful article The History of the Rosemount Library: Endless Growth on the READ website, http://www.readrosemount.ca .


Once upon a time.

Photo Caption: Old Rosemount Library in an early photograph. Image courtesy of Dave Allston’s KitchissippiMuseum.blogspot.ca .


1 Comment

  1. T’was Always Thus…citizen input on Rosemount Library | READ

    July 9, 2016 @ 3:50 pm

    […] News West , July 7, 2016. p 11. For 98 years Hintonburg residents have not been shy about voicing their points of view. The Rosemount Library is a good case in point….. To read more […]

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