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The Athy Library Project: Kildare Library & Arts Service Evelyn Cooley, Laura Larkin

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This presentation will introduce the Athy Library project which saw the architecturally significant Dominican church in Athy town centre being renovated to create this transformative library which has brought new life to an iconic community space.

This project highlights the continued investment in the public library service, not alone in Kildare but throughout the country. This community facility received €1.65m from the Department of Rural and Community Development – Library Capital Investment Programme 2016-2021 with a further €2.1m provided by Kildare County Council.

The presentation will cover a number of aspects:

Functionality, flexibility and accessibility of the building which have been achieved by the collaborative approach with the planning input and design.
The position of Athy Library in the centre of Athy from a social, cultural and economic perspective
How this new library has redefined and developed its role in the community
The digital services and IT spaces and their role in the library
The library as a space for all

Evaluation of the new Athy Library one year one from opening – what do the statistics show but more importantly what does the community think.

Published in: Education
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The Athy Library Project: Kildare Library & Arts Service Evelyn Cooley, Laura Larkin

  1. 1. The Athy Library Project: Kildare Library & Arts Service Evelyn Cooley & Laura Larkin Kildare Library Service
  2. 2. Background • Purchased by Kildare County Council in 2015 • Funding - €1.65 million from Dept. of Rural and Community Development • €2.1 million from Kildare County Council • March 2018 – library staff vacated old library building and moved to new premises in Convent Lane • Highlights continued investment in the library service – not only in Kildare but throughout the country
  3. 3. •Community Ownership •Pride in this new facility •Branding reflective of this •Love your Library •This is ‘your space’ or ‘spás duitse’ 4 A Space for All
  4. 4. How was this space for all achieved • Location • Size • Scope • Accessibility • Physical space Result • A transformative library which has brought new life to an iconic space in Athy 5
  5. 5. A Central Hub • Full opening hours • Events for everyone • Culture Night • PolskaÉire Festival • Heritage Week • Comhaltas Ceoltóirí • Kildare Library Service Programmes • Kildare Leader Partnership • Student support • A go to place for the community • Attraction for tourists
  6. 6. A space for creativity, learning and relaxation
  7. 7. Programming & Events in Athy Library World Book Day 2019 KCC Love Your Dog session Learning to use PC with Irish Rural Link STEAM 3D Printing Workshop Trad Music ConcertsTTT Programming
  8. 8. Reaching out to our Community Athy Sign & Sing Festival Autism Friendly Santa
  9. 9. Innovative Digital Technology Bibliotheca Self Check 1000 Make your own tablet kit Virtual reality headsets Botley the coding robot Samsung digital flip chartMotion sensor control for laptops/tablets
  10. 10. Statistics Comparison 0 20,000 40,000 60,000 80,000 100,000 Footfall 0 1,000 2,000 3,000 4,000 5,000 6,000 Membership 2017 2018
  11. 11. Statistics Comparison continued 0 100 200 300 400 500 600 Events 0 2,000 4,000 6,000 8,000 10,000 12,000 14,000 16,000 WiFI 2017 2018 0 2,000 4,000 6,000 8,000 10,000 PC Usage 2017 2018

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