Library buys land for new main facility

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Property located on Conestoga Parkway next to city hall

By Stephanie Jessie

 SHEPHERDSVILLE — With a new branch recently opened in Mount Washington and another branch set for construction in Nichols, the Bullitt County Public Library Board of Trustees are looking toward the future for its main facility.

Poor location and lack of space are two reasons that has led to the purchase of five acres of land on Conestoga Parkway for a new Shepherdsville location of the Bullitt County Public Libraries.

“Right now, no one knows where the Shepherdsville library is,” director Joe Schweiss said. “That location is impossible to find.”

He said he spoke with a patron recently who had been traveling to the Hillview branch for years, despite there being a branch a mile from her Shepherdsville home.

“We’re trying to work on a bigger central location that will have a little more offering,” he said.

Currently, two departments work out of a satellite location, which Schweiss says is difficult.

“This will bring everyone together,” he said. “We’ll get a larger workspace and get more meeting space.”

Finding a new home wasn’t an easy task, though.

Schweiss said it was important there be enough room for parking, having struggled with the limited parking spots at the current Walnut Street location that compete with the multiple government buildings surrounding it. There also needed to be enough room to have plenty of meeting spaces.

After battling with multiple warehouses and retailers, and ensuring they wouldn’t be in trouble of being in a flood zone or blocked by traffic, Schweiss said they decided on the land in between the Shepherdsville Government Center and Lowes.

The land was purchased for $1,681,668.05 and was finalized earlier this year.

With the newest building in Mount Washington recently opening, Schweiss said the board’s focus is on building the Nichols location. He said he hopes to see it finish within the next year, then begin the Conestoga location, adding that they are happy with the designer they’ve been working with and don’t want to overwork him.

“It’s exciting to be planning another building for a totally different community,” he said. “It’s really putting our brains into a different mode so I think that’ll help us. We’ve learned a lot from the other experiences we’ve done. It’s a lot less scary now.”

Other than the Mount Washington project, Bullitt County Public Libraries built a new location in Hillview in 2012 and in Lebanon Junction in 2010. Toward of the end of this year, Schweiss said he’d like to see some refreshing take place at the Lebanon Junction location.