Construction of the new Windsor Public Library branch at the Optimist Community Centre (1075 Ypres Avenue) is well ahead of schedule and will open before the January 2018 advertised date.
Representatives from the City of Windsor and Windsor Public Library gathered at the Optimist Community Centre to ‘break the wall’ between the new library and the community centre, officially joining the two entities.
The new $2.46 million, 6,500 sq. ft. library will be a 21st. century facility with a distinctly automotive theme and connect to the west end of the Optimist Community Centre on Ypres Avenue in South Walkerville. Designed by Dan Amicone of Architecttura Inc., of Windsor, Ontario, construction began in late 2016 with a Grand Opening scheduled for fall 2017. The total collection size will be 22,000 volumes comprising print, audio, video and multilingual resources for children, teens, adults and seniors, public computers, WIFI, study space, cutting edge technical resources and the space to house a 4600 volume Automotive Archive.
City of Windsor Mayor Drew Dilkens said the new branch is a truly fitting tribute to local automotive history. “Windsor is Canada’s Motor City and the new library at the Optimist Community Centre certainly taps into our heritage through innovative design and layout. The new South Walkerville facility will also ensure the community remains strong and vibrant and our automotive heritage isn’t forgotten. The Automotive Archive will be a fascinating window into an important part of Windsor-Essex history and a must-see visit for everyone.”
Windsor Public Library Board Chair, Dr. Peter Frise, said that the opening of the new library in the fall will be a continuation of unprecedented change for WPL. “The WPL Board has provided a roadmap for a sustainable public library system that will serve Windsorites as our city evolves over the next 20+ years. This iconic facility is a building to which our community will want to return again and again.”
The Automotive Archives is the first of its kind in Canada and is a celebration of the automobile, the industry and its importance to the development of Windsor and Essex County. It houses information on makes and models of vehicles produced around the world. Included are rare vehicle service manuals, dealer publicity materials dating back decades, manufacturing plans for classic models and even a set of rare design concept sketches from a prominent vehicle designer.