I was in Stettler, Alberta in March and visited the town’s renovated library.
It’s unbelievably great. While Stettler serves about half the population of the Sooke area, its library is at least four times the size of Sooke’s with four times the books, magazines, videos and even a lounge area with television.
Meanwhile, back in slow-moving Sooke, the cramped library, and its excellent staff, continue to valiantly serve an ever-increasing number of people. And don’t forget the entirely too small parking lot, which means vehicles park on the now-busy Anna Marie Road, often dangerously double-parked.
I’ve been using the Sooke library since 1992 and sadly, it’s been a miserly evolution.
And now, according to Juan de Fuca Regional Director Mike Hicks, Sooke can’t find the land for a new 10,000-square-foot library.
Amazing that there has not been anyone with the foresight to have been planning for the significant need for a facility that gets used a lot more than other pet projects.
Do developers bear some blame? Do some have land they can donate for a library? Do they contribute to a fund for such capital projects? Or, maybe Kinder Morgan can purchase some property as a good will gesture.
I’m sure there will be plenty of excuses made and finger-pointing, which will be typical for a town that still hasn’t installed complete and logically-placed sidewalks in the town core.