A project that’s been nearly five years in the making will open to the public this weekend in Cedar Rapids. The flood of 2008 buried all of downtown under water, destroying many buildings, including the main branch of the public library. Since then, the library has been located in Westdale Mall.
Library spokesperson Amber Mussman says staff and volunteers are spending this week moving materials into a new permanent location just across the street. Mussman says 60,000 to 70,000 books and materials will be moved. The new Ladd Library covers 21,000 square feet and will feature study rooms, a community room and free Wi-Fi.
“One of the great things that we are looking forward to is the natural light,” Mussman said. “There are big, beautiful windows in that place that just make it a wonderful place that you want to spend time.” A grand opening for the Ladd Library is set for 10 a.m. Saturday.
The new library, located at 3750 Williams Blvd. SW, is named after the late Marilyn Ladd. Two years ago, Ladd gave the library the largest ever individual donation of $750,000.
By Addison Speck, KCRG-TV, Cedar Rapids