Glimmer of hope for Williamsburg library

 

“We are asking you to please work in our favour,” said Pamela Rodrigue, who made a plea to South Dundas council at the April 2, regular council meeting.

She spoke on behalf of the group who is fighting to keep the Williamsburg branch of the Stormont, Dundas and County Library open. 

The SD&G Library Board decided late last year that the branch will be closed and consolidated with the Morrisburg branch. 

Unless the library board reverses the decision, the consolidated branch will be at the new Morrisburg location, in renovated space that will be vacated by the St. Lawrence Medical Clinic as part of the Morrisburg Collegiate Institute redevelopment. 

According to South Dundas Mayor Steven Byvelds, that decision was solely the decision of the SD&G County Library Board. 

Byvelds told Rodrigue and the 40 library supporters who packed council chambers, that the library board has never been told by South Dundas that the library has to vacate the building in Williamsburg.

South Dundas Deputy Mayor Jim Locke, who is a member of the library board, said, “If this council supports promoting the library in Williamsburg, I will support that in my position on the library board.”

This offer of support, along with information about a potential tenant for the South Dundas municipal building in Williamsburg, has given Williamsburg library supporters a little hope about the future of the library.

Rodrigue stated at the council meeting that the TR Leger School is in the process of leasing the building in Williamsburg and that they are willing to consider leasing space to the library. “What a wonderful partnership this would be,” she commented.

“This would be a good opportunity to offer a library,” said Byvelds, adding that he is hopeful the possibility of that partnership pans out. “That would be a positive economic drive for Williamsburg.” 

According to Byvelds, township staff and TR Leger staff have been meeting regarding the Williamsburg building. Council is aware of the negotiations, however, that information was discussed in closed session.

Byvelds said the township will work with TR Leger, but if the library doesn’t work for that arrangement, there are alternative sites where some level of service could be offered.

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