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Anchorage

Loussac Library closing for 2 weeks for new entrance, reorganization

  • Author: Devin Kelly
  • Updated: July 4, 2017
  • Published July 3, 2017

The new entrance begins to take shape as window openings are framed at the Loussac Library on Dec. 7, 2016, in Midtown. Following completion of renovations, the library will feature a pedestrian plaza leading to a ground-floor entryway. (Erik Hill / Alaska Dispatch News)

The Loussac Library in Midtown Anchorage will be closed for about two weeks starting Tuesday while construction crews erect a new front entrance and reorganize interior departments.

It's the latest closure caused by the major renovation underway at the 1980s-era building. Construction started in May 2015.

The front entrance of the Loussac used to be at the top of a staircase on the southeast side of the building. That staircase has since been torn down, with designers opting for a ground-floor entrance with paneled windows.

Two departments — Patron Services, which helps people check out and return books, and Technical Services, which handles new materials — are being moved to the first floor during the upcoming closure. Several art pieces will also be installed, said Annie Reeves, the library's community relations coordinator.

Between July 21 and Aug. 31, library patrons will be directed to an outdoor book drop near the staff parking lot while crews install a new, automated book handling system.

No firm end date has yet been set for the renovation. The budget for the project recently climbed to $15 million, about $1.5 million more than originally planned.

Delays in the delivery of construction materials, on top of unexpectedly major repairs to the building's structural supports, forced the city to dip into its contingency fund for the project, officials said.

The library will reopen at 10 a.m. on Wednesday, July 19.

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