Working with the Friends of the Central Library of Wilcox County the Rural Library Project Inc. has developed an adaptive re-use plan for a new 4000 square ft library in a historic building in Rochelle.  Located on Gordon Street downtown, the brick building was constructed in the 1920’s and has been used as a car dealership, sewing factory and antiques warehouse over the last 90 years.  This innovative project restores the exterior facade of the building and creates new affordable interior space by creating a “shell within a shell” rather than restoring at considerably more expense the interior of the building.  This project should have broad appeal to rural cities seeking to revitalize downtown areas by locating this quality of life amenity in a suitable underutilized building.  Fundraising for the project has begun in the fall of 2009.

Building Before Renovations


     Lions Club Treasurer Matt Estes presents to Judy Willcox Treasurer of Friends of Patriots Public Library a check for $2000.00.  The Rochelle Lions Club is pleased to support the project to build a public library in Rochelle. Lions members James Lee (in his truck), Mark Rhodes, and Jim Fitzgerald represent the Club in the presentation. 


     On Sept 11, 2010 at  the Rochelle Lions Club Farmers Day in Rochelle Georgia,  Dan White of Rural Library Project  presents a check for $3000.00 to Jim Fitzgerald, President of Friends of Patriot's Public Library.  The check is a grant from The Betty and Davis Fitzgerald Foundation  of Atlanta and the funds will be used to pay for architectural drawings for the library to be built in Rochelle as well as for underwriting fundraising efforts.  Judy Willcox  Treasurer of Friends of Patriot's Public Library is also pictured.

Update: February, 2012


     With the financial help of the Georgia Pacific Foundation, new windows have been installed on the front and north facade of the Patriot Public Library building, which was constructed in the 1920’s. These energy- efficient, low-e windows have been customized to shade the interior lobby from the western sun while allowing abundant natural light into the building. These new windows have been installed in historically accurate window frames built by local craftsmen that mirror the original look of this building in downtown Rochelle.


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