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Thread: Level of service standard: library

  1. #1

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    Level of service standard: library

    Does anybody have a level of service standard for library space? I have a volumes per population standard (3.5 per person) that seems to be widely accepted, but a space standard would be helpful.

  2. #2
    Cyburbian The One's avatar
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    A good level...

    Our library is about 12,000sf and on 1 acre with 50,000+ volumes and on street parking (just under 43k pop.) Sounds like your standard exceeds what we have......I'd go with it...... Our library could be about 1/2 again as big as it is and be about right....
    Skilled Adoxographer
    I have two emotions....Silence and Rage

  3. #3

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    I read an article today concerning my town's plans for library expansion. The goal is 90,000 sf of space serving a population of 150,000. This is up from the 30,000 sf we have today.

    http://www.oregonlive.com/metrowest/...8629588020.xml

  4. #4
    Cyburbian iamme's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Lee Nellis
    Does anybody have a level of service standard for library space? I have a volumes per population standard (3.5 per person) that seems to be widely accepted, but a space standard would be helpful.
    The city of Milwaukee has a ratio of 5.14 per person (595,508 pop.) However, residents of the city also have access to the suburban libraries in Milwaukee county and vice versa, so that could move that number around a bit. I'm sorry I don't have footage numbers available.

  5. #5
    Cyburbian Budgie's avatar
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    Municipal Benchmarks, Assessing Local Performance and Establishing Community Standards by David N. Ammons is the best comprehensive LOS and benchmarking book I have come across. This book includes a table that has a summation of the American Library Association, Minimum Standards for Public Library systems. Here's what it has on floor space:

    For communities of 25,000 to 49,999 population, 5,000 sq. ft. plus 1 additional square foot for every 10 books beyond a 50,000-volume collection; for smaller communities, 1,500 square feet plus 1 addition square foot for every 10 books beyond a 15,000-volume collection.

    The Kansas standards are as follows:

    Population Served Sq. Ft.
    Less than 500 1,670
    500 - 1,000 2,350
    1,000 - 2,500 3,044
    2,500 - 10,000 5,000
    10,000 - 25,000 9,500
    25,000 - 100,000 0.8 sq. ft. per capita
    100,000 and more 0.8 sq. ft. per capita

    Let me know if you'd like specific cites.
    "And all this terrible change had come about because he had ceased to believe himself and had taken to believing others. " - Leo Tolstoy

  6. #6

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    Thanks for the help.

  7. #7
    Cyburbian nerudite's avatar
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    I like the way Sarasota handled it in their CFP. You may also want to look through some CFPs from Washington State at www.mrsc.org, as I know several deal with library facilities and include LOS.

  8. #8
    Cyburbian mike gurnee's avatar
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    And, of course, ask the librarian if the formula reflects the community.

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