EDITORIAL: Page needs to be opened on library project

We say: New library holds the key to town centre development.

If the District of Sooke really wants to move forward on town centre development, the biggest leap will come from building a new library.

The district, Vancouver Island Regional Library board and the Capital Regional District have all agreed Sooke’s current library is past its best before date.

Yet, any move to a physical building is moving at a glacial pace.

Last summer the district asked for a request for proposal and had six replies. None met the criteria. (Although one developer said, he met all the criteria except proper zoning; that problem has since been rectified).

The CRD approved up to $6 million in funding last October, but VIRL can’t seem to get dust off the project’s plan and take it to the next level.

Municipal and library officials say everyone needs to be onside. Fair enough, but they also need to be rowing in the same direction, too.

The back and forth discussions on the library project has been going on for years. This Saturday, VIRL board will discuss the library again, but there appears little, if any, hope of it getting out of the bureaucratic quagmire.

Now as the district is headstrong in developing the town centre, with the completion of the roundabout, it is time to get this project off the ground.

It shouldn’t surprise anyone that libraries have helped revitalize struggling or depressed communities.

Like a major department store in a mall, libraries attract large numbers of people, creating economic opportunities for a myriad of businesses and organizations in the surrounding area. Large cities, medium-sized ones and even small towns have successfully transformed their libraries into the hubs of vibrant neighborhoods.

In the words of Robert Putnam, “People may go to the library looking mainly for information, but they find each other there.”

•••

We want to hear from you. Send you comments to editor@sookenewsmirror.com. Letters must include daytime phone number and your name.

 

Just Posted

Sixty Sooke homes needed to host Japanese students

Homestay program offers visitors a taste of life in Canada

B.C. Lions hype-man marks 15 years of cheers

Crazy P cheers, chants, bangs his drum and spreads a message of love

Saanich Peninsula Hospital Foundation looks to grow funding for memory garden

Foundation will start new campaign next month as it wraps up recruitment campaign

Survey says 27% of Victoria employers look to hire this quarter

Another 13 % of employers anticipate cutbacks

Sidney councillor calls for more public access to waterfront

Coun. Sara Duncan made the comment as municipality and marine operator

VIDEO: A moment to remember during the World Lacrosse Men’s Indoor Championship in B.C.

Diego Hernandez Valenzuela’s team lost, but he felt like a winner Saturday

PHOTOS: Steller sea lion with plastic around neck rescued on Vancouver Island

Rescue staff determined the plastic band cut the protected animal’s neck approximately two inches

B.C. VIEWS: School officials join fact-free ‘climate strike’

Students, public get distorted picture of greenhouse gases

Handgun crackdown, health spending and transit plans latest campaign promises

Friday was the end of a busy week on the campaign trail

B.C. woman photographs massive ant swarm on Abbotsford driveway

She asked what the ants were doing? The answer: war

Iconic 90s TV show ‘Friends’ celebrates 25th anniversary

The iconic, decade-long television show aired its first episode 25 years ago today

Police arrest B.C. phone scammer linked to illegal call centres in India

Person arrested in Burnaby here on a work visa, says police

Air Canada forced girl, 12, to remove hijab: civil rights group

The San Francisco Bay Area office of the Council on American-Islamic Relations calling for change

Most Read