Work could begin soon on the long-planned construction of a full-service library geared to serve the residents of Albuquerque’s International District.
The $15 million project will be going on the north side of 7605 Central Avenue at the site of the former Caravan East Nightclub, which closed its doors in late 2016.
The City of Albuquerque subsequently purchased the two-block site shortly after the nightclub went out of business, with the nightclub structure itself demolished a year later.
As planned, the new facility, as designed by RMKM Architecture of Albuquerque, will not only include space for book shelves, but also community meeting rooms, interactive story walls, and an amphitheater.
The project has been the subject of a series of public input meetings.
Albuquerque/Bernalillo County Library System officials have long pushed for the construction of a library whose primary function would be to serve the underserved International District, which has a population of around 30,000 people and is known for its diverse population.
The project is being funded through a combination of sources including just under $2 million in capital outlay spending approved last year by the New Mexico State Legislature, as well as $5.5 million in bond funding approved by local voters in November.
An additional $505,000 in capital outlay spending for the project that was passed by lawmakers this winter was subsequently vetoed by Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham.
By Garry Boulard
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