In the near future, residents of Bragg Creek will be able to use a new satellite library, which has officially been given the go-ahead by Rocky View County (RVC).
RVC council approved the creation of the Bragg Creek Satellite Library (BCSL) during the regular July 14 meeting. Council also approved an associated budget adjustment of $90,000 allocated to the resource.
“We are very thrilled that we have reached the point we can actually move forward,” said Marigold Library System's (MLS) chief executive officer, Michelle Toombs. “Hopefully, if all goes well, we might even have the service available to nearby residents by the end of 2020.”
Established in 1981, MLS is a non-profit municipal collaborative that provides affordable, state-of-the-art public library services and support. The system currently serves 44 municipalities, according to its website, and supports 37 member libraries.
The MLS and the Cochrane Public Library brought the initial presentation to the County’s Recreation Governance Committee, who recommended council to approve the initiative and fund allocation.
The BCSL will be located within the Bragg Creek Community Centre. According to Toombs, the funding will support the preparation and installation of 28 smart locker units, as well as furniture.
The satellite library will be able to be used with any valid library card. A cardholder can make orders online for books, DVDs, audiobooks and other library resources.
After an order is submitted, it will be delivered to the smart locker. Once the order is in stock, users can scan their card, the locker will unlock and they will see their ordered materials.
“A lot of people these days order their materials online and go to libraries to pick them up,” Toombs said. “This is a very natural process for someone who is accustomed to using library resources.”
The key to the satellite library, Toombs added, is that it functions on its own without staff present. She said another important aspect would be the installation of café tables and other furniture, which will provide a place for people to gather.
“Hopefully, someday we will get back to the point where people can actually come together and gather in this space,” she said.
In the future, Cochrane Public Library staff will also provide programs at the BCSL. Toombs added libraries continue to be important community resources, as they provide more than just books.
“They bring people together, they contribute to the sustainability of communities,” she said. “There are just so many benefits to that. The MLS exists because 44 municipalities felt that it was important to have library services.”
Toombs added the staff at RVC has worked hard to sell the idea of the BCSL and extend local library services.
“They deserve a lot of credit for promoting it and making it available,” she said.