TNRL announces the launch of a tiny library located in Aberdeen Mall

TNRL launches tiny library

The Thompson-Nicola Regional Library has announced it will be opening a small, temporary library location inside Aberdeen Mall this fall.

According to the TNRL, the new location will be the first additional library opened in Kamloops since 1974.

The Thompson-Nicola Regional District board of directors voted in favour of entering into a year-long lease agreement with the mall at a meeting on Aug. 17.

In a report prepared for the meeting, Judy Moore, TNRL’s chief librarian, said the interim location would be available for underserved patrons while the library continues its search for a permanent South Kamloops branch.

“A storefront would serve as a stop gap solution, enabling the library to continue its quest for a suitable building site for a 25,000 square foot facility, deliver service and some programming, and engage South Kamloops residents though a library card campaign,” Moore wrote.

In a statement announcing the new library location, the TNRL said the 352 square foot space will be reminiscent of a tiny home, as staff hope to provide people with a cozy space to find books and other materials.

The new library will be located next to the mall food court.

In her report, Moore noted the benefits of opening a location in the mall, include its accessible, central location, the availability of parking and public washroom access.

The mall is already the site of a book drop for TNRL returns, and is located some distance away from other library branches.

According to the TNRL, the mall will install flooring, lighting, a drop ceiling and drywall. The lease will take effect on Oct. 1, 2023, and Moore said the scheduled opening date for the new location would be in late fall.

The space will only be staffed during peak times, so self-serve solutions like lockers for pickups, a book vending machine and return boxes will be available during regular mall hours.

The tiny library will also offer programs such as a weekly story time.

The proposed location is estimated to cost $167,000 in start-up costs, and $36,096 annually for the lease and utilities.

The TNRL said all operating and start up costs will be taken from provincial grant money received by the TNRL, and items purchased for the space will be reused when a permanent location is found.

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