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Clowes Foundation Grant Provides for Improved, More Efficient Services at the Shelby Branch Library

December 01, 2010

The Indianapolis-Marion County Public Library Foundation has received a grant of $393,787 from the Allen Whitehill Clowes Charitable Foundation that will better equip the Shelby Branch of the Indianapolis-Marion County Public Library to provide 21st century library services and showcase new green technologies.

Shelby Branch

Renovations at the Shelby Branch, which opened in 1965 and is located on the south side of Indianapolis at 2502 Shelby Street, will allow for the addition of public computers and a reconfiguration of various public service areas. These include the children's area, a family and adult reading area, a new materials display area, and a flexible, multi-purpose event space.

These and other improvements to restrooms, energy systems and staff work areas will help the Shelby Branch operate more efficiently without having to add more staff. Better computer and Internet access will meet the strong demand for a community technology center as recommended from a neighborhood assessment conducted by graduate students from IUPUI's School of Public and Environmental Affairs.

The renovation project also will be a starting point for the Shelby Branch to utilize environmental technologies that not only can help it operate in a more cost-effective manner and contribute to the Library system's long-term financial sustainability, but allow it to serve as an educational center for preserving natural resources through efficient use of energy. 

Since the Shelby Branch is located adjacent to Garfield Park, the concept of "The Green Library in the Park" could showcase such conservation methods as the use of solar and wind power, LED and other innovative lighting, and the capturing of rain water for non-drinkable needs. Glass walls and encased meters inside and outside the library could allow children and adults to monitor how energy is being used and conserved.

Renovations will begin in early 2011, with the reconfiguration of public service areas planned for completion by the middle of the year. Little or no disruption of services is anticipated.