In 2012 The RLP was contacted by the librarian of the Gravette Public Library seeking help on trying to improve the public library in this northwest Arkansas town of 3500 residents with 4 public schools.

      Over the next few years the RLP advised the librarian and city officials on various options for expanding the library. Floor plans for both a new library as well as adaptive re-use of existing buildings were designed by the RLP for the city and library
staff’s consideration . Ultimately it was decided that two adjoining buildings on main street in downtown Gravette provided the most affordable option available to the city.

      The city and library committee raised $100,000 to refurbish the two buildings creating 4000 square feet for the new library-doubling the size of the existing library.

      This affordable adaptive re-use of downtown commercial buildings is also intended to increase foot traffic on main street, hopefully generating new retail activity and civic vibrancy.

      In the words of the librarian Kim Schneider , “The Rural Library Project engaged with and encouraged us over the four years it took to complete this project, consulting with us on capital campaign ideas and on construction and design issues, all without charge”.

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