Planners study contentious C.P. library construction

2011-03-15T18:45:00Z 2011-03-15T23:06:53Z Planners study contentious C.P. library constructionBy Susan Erler, (219) 662-5336

CROWN POINT | Officials met Wednesday to begin planning construction of a new library on the downtown square.

A May groundbreaking is tentatively planned for a $12 million building in the 100 block of North Main Street. The library is moving from 214 S. Court St.

Mayor David Uran, Library Director Lynn Frank and other officials studied logistics, from where construction trailers will park to the division of responsibilities.

"This is a joint project," Frank said. "All of these things are things we're working through."

The project cleared a hurdle Monday when the city closed on the $450,000 purchase of property neighboring the new library site for planned outdoor green space and additional parking.

The existing building at 120 N. Main St. will be razed, and its occupant, Homann Karate Do, will move to a space in the city-owned North Street athletic complex.

Uran said plans remain in place to meet with Realtors Tom and Ryan Fleming over the pair's complaint that the design for the new library doesn't fully comply with standards for preserving the downtown's historic look.

"We are still very concerned about this issue," Ryan Fleming said Tuesday. "Our intention is to protect the integrity of the historic district."

An injunction on the project, permitted by a city ordinance regulating historic districts, remains an option, Ryan Fleming said.

The library design was approved last year by the city's Historic Preservation Commission.

"We have every reason to believe the building is going to be hitting the milestones created," by historic district regulations, Uran said.

"At the same time I'm always willing to put people in a room (to talk) if they're having any questions," Uran said.

No date has been set for a meeting with the Flemings and others concerning the design.

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