June 22, 2024

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Library closes for structural repairs, reopening this summer

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The Flin Flon Public Library will be closed for about two months as workers come in to fix parts of the aging building’s structure.

The Flin Flon Public Library will be closed for about two months as workers come in to fix parts of the aging building’s structure.

City council signed an agreement between the City and RK’s Metals to carry out the repairs on the library during their April 23 meeting. Financial terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

Following the agreement, the City announced May 1 that the library would be closed for about eight weeks, starting May 6. The work will be focused on repairing the existing structure, particularly its roof and with the building’s internal structure. The repairs are set to start this month and continue on through the next two months.

“I know with the library, we’re excited to get that work finally underway,” said councillor Bill Hanson, who chairs councils’ engineering services committee.

“The completion date is the end of June – that’s their hard deadline according to the bid,” added councillor Alison Dallas-Funk.

The building that houses the library, the Centennial Building, has been standing since 1967 and has had to close for repairs before, most notably in early 2022 and early 2023 – the library closed for two months due to urgent roof and wall repairs. Most of the work done on the building was centred around the library’s north wall, where structural problems like water damage were found – after an engineering assessment, steel beams were inserted in the roof to help support it.

The library reopened, but with the knowledge that more repairs would still be needed.

“We had engineers come in and stabilise it,” said Hanson.

The city sought to receive extra funding to finish the project last year and got some through the provincial government’s Arts, Culture and Sport in Community (ACSC) fund. It got $70,000 through the fund at first, then another $213,107.50 through the fund this year to cover the repairs. The total amount was less than the City originally sought for the project – the hoped-for goal was up to $400,000 to fully cover the work – but the money from the province will still mean a lower cost for repairs and a smaller burden on local taxpayers. Through the ACSC, the City applied through the small capital projects and special initiative projects stream, which can bring in up to $300,000 per individual project.

During construction, no books can be taken out from or returned to the library. Anyone using the library is asked not to use the book drop – all late fees for books borrowed from the library and through inter-library loans will be waived while the library is closed. Any other services for the library, including kids’ reading courses, will be cancelled until the library reopens.


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