Should Gladwyne Library Add an Elevator?

See the new design drawings for a proposed elevator addition at a meeting Wednesday.

New design drawings for a proposed elevator addition to the Gladwyne Library will be revealed

The informational meeting, during which the community can ask questions, on the library’s handicap accessibility project will take place at 7:30 p.m. in the Waverly Heights Auditorium, 1400 Waverly Road in Gladwyne.

The proposed project includes a new handicap-accessible bathroom, a reconfigured staff workroom and a new Young Adult section in addition to an elevator, which would give Americans with Disabilities Act access to all three floors.

The proposal is part of Lower Merion Library System’s plan to renovate each of its six libraries. It was recommended in a 2004 space planning study of the library system.

The first conceptual plan for the elevator addition was rejected by the township’s Historic and Architectural Review Board. The library’s building, which is owned by the library, was built in 1921 by the Episcopal diocese.

What do you think? Should the Gladwyne Library add an elevator to its building? Tell us in the comments below.

sam February 23, 2013 at 01:02 AM
Absolutely, no reason to shut our library for one year or more for this. The Bryn Mawr, Penn Wynne, etc. locations are sufficient. The more government meddles in our affairs, the worse we are.
Joan Holmes February 23, 2013 at 02:26 PM
NO! The township does NOT own the building. The Bryn Mawr Library is not that far away and has a larger selection with handicap access.
goosefeathers February 23, 2013 at 08:08 PM
Count me as “against.” I was on the Gladwyne Library’s Board of Trustees year’s ago when this was first brought up. Lower Merion proposed the project because they stated that we had to have an elevator and secondly they would pick up the total tab. We voted yes because there was no other option, or cost involved. Today 2 things are different. We learned that we do not need an elevator. Because Gladwyne is part of a library “system,” Lower Merion is not discriminating against handicapped library patrons since all the other local libraries are accessible and Ludington is just minutes away. Incidently, Gladwyne does have a handicapped entrance that opens right onto the main floor. Secondly, Lower Merion Township, wants the Gladwyne Library’s BOT to sign an agreement that includes a lien on the building among other things. I respect their right to protect their $1.5 million investment of public funds into a privately-owned building, however, this is no longer “free” money originally promised. They also want the Library to come up with $250K of the total. I believe the Gladwyne Library should remain as is, privately-owned. Also if this proposal becomes reality, the library is estimated to be closed for one year. I think our local community will greatly miss its presence.
Ruth Niesen February 23, 2013 at 09:25 PM
I want to go on record as being "for" the renovation s which would make all 3 floors,as well as a restroom, handicapped-accessible. We have a significant number of senior citizens residing in Gladwyne at Waverly Heights who may not have ready transportation to Ludington Library. In addition, I value and support the programs offered only at the Gladwyne Library, especially the book discussion series and the Arts & Crafts Show which currently utilyze the meeting space on the second floor. Several of the patrons, as well as some of the staff, find this location challenging, if not inaccessible. We have already successfully endured the extended closure of Ludington Library so I anticipate patrons being prepared for any short term inconvenience in exchange for greater access for the long run.


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