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Facelift coming to DePue library

DEPUE — The Selby Township Library in DePue might be pushing 100, but after this summer, it’s certainly not going to look its age.

Selby Township Library Director Marcia Broady announced this week the library has been awarded a Public Library Construction Act Grant of up to $94,140 for the repair and upgrade of the existing library building.

Broady said the exterior of the building will be removed and replaced, and any structural damage will be repaired. New windows, soffits, gutters and other exterior improvements will also be included in the project.

Broady said 15 libraries were selected as eligible out of 47 applicants for the grants. The library then had to show it could provide the matching funds portion of 25 percent. After that was completed, the library received a contract from the state, which means the grant project can proceed.

“The grant index ranked each library based on financial parameters, and we qualified for 75 percent, which means the library only has to pay 25 percent of the total project,” Broady said. “The grant will provide 75 percent up to the grant total of $94,140. The total cost of the project is estimated to be $125,520. If the cost is more than that, the library would have to pay the rest.”

Broady said $50 million was appropriated by the Illinois General Assembly to fund this grant program. Secretary of State/State Librarian Jesse White awarded the grants based on an application process which was reviewed, scored and ranked as prescribed by the Illinois Administrative Rules.

Broady said the current library building was originally built as an interurban station in 1906. Later it was a doctor’s office, and in 1986 was remodeled to serve as the library building. She said in recent years, water damage, due to age and deterioration, was found, and some repairs were made.

“The board voted to pursue the grant in order to preserve the building,” Broady said. “The grant will allow the building to maintain its historical look and to ensure modest maintenance costs.”

Broady said the board hopes the work will be finished before the end of summer.

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