• Petitioned Tiburon Town Council

This petition was delivered to:

Tiburon Town Council

Redesign the new Library expansion

    1. Petition by

      R.E.A.D - Residents Envision Alternative Design

The Tiburon Town Council is poised to approve a large, new Library which will dismantle the charm and character of the existing “Arts and Crafts Style” building and replace it with a soulless “modern” design.

We know that the much-loved Belvedere-Tiburon library could use more space, especially for school-aged children and staff.  However, the new proposed building expansion design is massive, poorly sited, and not appropriately designed to respond to the many varied concerns expressed by our community.  The Library has not adequately involved the people, yet the plan still moves forward relentlessly.

The expansion’s 16,500 square feet of additional space does not respect the architecture of our present library.  It completely dwarfs and overwhelms our charming 10,500 square foot building and effectively wipes out its facade.  The new design eradicates many important and well-used spaces, which are much appreciated by the library users.

The general public has been unable to obtain the necessary information explaining how the library plans to finance the expansion, cover the increased costs of running a much larger operation, and sustain it in the future.

Are you aware that approximately three-quarters of a million dollars (no exact figures are available to the public) have already been spent on expansion?  The library has been, and still is, using donated funds for a public relations firm, marketing consultants and fund raising advisors to support this rather unpopular design.  A very aggressive public relations firm has been hired to push for public acceptance of the plan.

The library will have to cut its basic operating budget for the next year starting in July 1, 2012 because of major reductions in state funds, and various other essential income sources.  The library constantly asserts that any financial shortfall will be covered by the fundraising efforts of the library foundation. 

The library has stated, “The issues of size, scope and location have been decided; there will be no further debate or discussion.”

We urge the community to join us in questioning the massive size and placement of the current design.  Everyone who cares about the library and its future needs to demand  financial transparency of existing and projected expenses from the library.

Further debate and discussion are exactly what our community needs.

Recent signatures


    1. Reached 500 signatures


    Reasons for signing

    • John Kaufmann,M.D. TIBURON, CA
      • about 2 years ago

      This thing is monstrous, overly expensive, and architecturally uninteresting. Surely we can do better!

    • George Von Bozzay BELVEDERE TIBURON, CA
      • about 2 years ago

      The proposed addition is large and unsightly instead a smaller and unobtrusive addition could be added to the back of the library at a far lower cost

    • Roy Crumrine TIBURON, CA
      • about 2 years ago

      As a nearly 20 year resident, I remember the tiny little library we had where the post office is now. It wasn't much bigger than the used book store we currently have at the Boardwalk which supports the library.

      Over the years, I have used the existing library more than most people and have been there many times when it's the busiest; after school, and during lectures. Other than at those times, the library is rarely crowded and most seats and computer terminals are empty. Most of the time, the lecture room is completely empty and unused.

      We used to have a small dedicated teen room. Then, it was sealed off and taken over by the library management in order to provide a place for the library foundation to raise money for the library!

      Recently, the study alcove behind the children's library was sealed off and taken over for storage space.

      The current building is architecturally stunning, and the current building is easily 90% or more functional as it stands today to provide for all library needs of our community.

      If the library needs extra storage space, it can rent offsite space. If it needs larger meeting space, there are other locations in town that can provide it. If they can pay $800K on expansion plans, they can rent some offsite office and storage space.

      We don't need a used book area, coffee shop, or computer training area. All these needs are already well provided elsewhere.

      Lastly, in these days where most employees of high tech and internet companies sit side by side at cubicles and desks, I can't even fathom why any extra space would be needed for offices and staff. If the staff doesn't have enough space in the current building, have the Foundation rent some space elsewhere. When the recreation department moves it's offices behind the police station, there will be space next door in Town Hall!!! In this virtual age, do they really need office space to perform their function?

      In my opinion, the only space that's lacking, is for the children of the community to go to after school. Since the front courtyard off of the children's library is hardly ever used, the only possible expansion I could imagine would be to push out the children's library towards Tiburon Boulevard with a tastefully architecturally integrated gable roof covering it.

      Because our schools don't keep the libraries open after hours, many children in our community go to the library for afterschool studying and tutoring. Once again, compared to ruining this architecturally stunning library and wasting millions of dollars on this massive addition, we should look at the more sensible and cost effective alternative to keeping the school libraries open after hours (say for 2-3 hours) and pay for this extra service via increases in donations to the school foundation. It would also add the benefit of spreading out the afterschool pickup times for children and lessen the congestion on Tiburon Boulevard. For years, my children were picked up from their schools and driven down Tiburon Blvd to the Library every single school day ONLY because the school libraries didn't stay open after school.

      In closing, if necessary, to stop this ridiculous expansion, I would sign any petiion to put this measure on the ballot and have all of us vote for it. If the majority of voters want it, I'll reluctantly accept their decision. That said, from all my conversations around town, I find very few people who support this.

    • Bruce Abbott TIBURON, CA
      • about 2 years ago

      I prefer the status quo.

    • Siss Moller TIBURON, CA
      • about 2 years ago

      Much too large. Who will pay for the running of it?


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