By Thomas J. Sullivan–
Books are quickly returning to the shelves of the 12,500-square-foot Sylvan Oaks Library in Citrus Heights as staff busily prepare for a public re-opening, following a six-month closure.
The library will re-open to the public on Monday, July 15, at 10 a.m. The library closed its doors on Dec. 16 of last year while it underwent significant upgrades and modernization.
Crystal Miles, branch supervisor for the library, said patrons will enjoy the new “user friendly” features the branch now has to offer. Miles, who transferred to the Citrus Heights library from the Southgate branch, was excited to describe what the renovated library will have to offer as a learning center.
The Sylvan Oaks Library has been completely reconfigured inside. Personal self-check-out stations and a new front service desk is now front and center to greet library guests when they walk in, she said. The branch will employ eight full-time and one part-time staff members, some of whom are returning to work in Citrus Heights from other branches when the branch closed in December.
“Our staff will be better able to talk to and welcome each guest as they enter,” she said. “In this way we can quickly guide them to the books, movies and media they’re looking for. Overall, the library’s new floor plan is a much more welcoming, engaging space.”
Among the 12,000 new books added to the Sylvan Library’s existing collection of 65,000 items, will be new world language titles in Russian, Ukrainian and Spanish, Miles said. In addition, the membership-supported nonprofit, Friends of the Sacramento Library also donated 250 recent new titles to the library’s “Lucky Day” collection.
Two new study rooms have been built which are designed to serve as classroom-style spaces. Each now features new audio-visual equipment, white board walls, and a pull-down projection screen. These spaces will also be made available for rental to interested community groups through the Sacramento Library system, Miles said.
There also won’t be any more tripping over laptop extension cords, or looking for a place to charge a cell phone or electronic device.
“We’re also excited to offer many more opportunities for our library users to plug in their electronic devices. They’ll discover more of our tables and chairs have USB and power outlets built in,” she said.
Library restrooms have been made compliant with the federal Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), including new fixtures and tile.
“We’re also working on developing our children’s area with special sections for early learners, homework tutoring and science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) activities,” she said.
Sylvan Library staff will also soon resume its adult literacy program encouraging the reading skills of young and adult learners. “We will be using our new study rooms for that,” she said. Participants in the program will have a “quiet, private space which actively encourages learning.”
“We’ve taken a great library branch and made it even better,” Miles said.