Big improvements underway at Ishpeming library

Big improvements underway at Ishpeming library

A number of projects are underway to help ensure that one historic Upper Peninsula library can continue to serve its community for years to come.

The Ishpeming Carnegie Public Library Building Accessibility and Renovation Campaign is an ongoing series of projects that are helping the library to meet ADA accessibility rules and maintain relevance and usability for the community. One of the challenges of such an endeavor is maintaining the classic style of the building.

“It’s considered an icon, a treasure in the community,” said John McNaughton, the library’s director. “It’s been here since 1904, and it’s really important to them that if there are changes, that the fundamental structures, the historical integrity remains intact.”

New ramps and ADA compliant restrooms have been completed, and plans to add an elevator are moving forward. In addition to ongoing electrical and efficiency upgrades, a new community room has been added on the lower floor of the library. This will allow expansion of programs that the library offers.

“Our philosophy is to make this a community hub,” McNaughton added. “Now that it’s going to be ADA compliant, we want to make sure that that sends a message that it’s open to everyone in the community, and we’re looking forward to putting on more classes and programs, and trying to find something for everyone.”

Money for the renovations was provided by a combination of donations and fundraisers through community members and businesses, and via various community funds. Those interested in donating to the library or helping with future fundraisers can stop by or call the library at (906) 486-4381. You can also visit their website for more information.