UPDATED: City Adopts Library Guiding Principles: "Our Goal Is To Improve Communication"

What are you thoughts on the City's newly adopted Library Guiding Principles?

The Renton City Council adopted a set of nine Library Guiding Principles Monday night aimed at improving communication between Renton citizens, the City and King County Library System (KCLS).

In addition to improved communication, the guiding principles are the City's "attempt to respond to citizen questions," said City Facilities Director Peter Renner. 

 "These principles are intended to re-affirm and clarify assignment of responsibilities, coordination, communication, and parameters with respect to the development of the two new Renton Libraries, at the Cedar River and Highlands locations, consistent with existing interlocal agreements between KCLS and the City," according to the committee of the whole committee report, which was adopted as read with one editorial edit made by Council President Rich Zwicker. 

Zwicker amended a section of the sixth principle to read, "This will include regular open house meetings…" The original version read, "monthly open house meetings…" The Council President asked for the change based on public comments regarding the need for more frequent open house meetings.

The nine Library Guiding Principles are:

  1. The City of Renton (the City) and King County Library System (KCLS) have previously agreed, and remain committed to providing two new library facilities i the City "for the benefit of the citizens of Renton and the surrounding communities."
  2. The new libraries will be located over the Cedar River at Liberty Park and on Sunset Boulevard in the Highlands and will be designed to be consistent with or superior in form, function, and quality of other recently constructed libraries in the KCLS system.
  3. Both facilities will be designed and constructed within the budget approved and allocated for each building.
  4. As previously agreed through interlocal agreements, based on demonstrated knowledge, leadership, and experience in building and providing quality library services, KCLS will be the lead agency to manage and oversee the design and construction of both libraries.
  5. The City of Renton's Community Services and Community & Economic Development Departments will facilitate and support KCLS by assisting in design and construction oversight and attaining all necessary permits for the successful completion of the libraries.
  6. In addition to the open houses and presentations outlined in the interlocal agreement, the City will provide opportunities at regular intervals to update and receive input from city residents, and applicable boards, commissions and committees. This will include regular open house meetings designed to provide the latest information on the City and KCLS websites.
  7. The City and KCLS will endeavor to incorporate library design concepts and programming elements desired by the public, as outlined in the interlocal agreement.
  8. The City and KCLS will jointly select the final design for both libraries.
  9. Other specific assignments and responsibilities remain as provided and defined in the adopted interlocal agreement between KCLS and the City.

The first open house meeting, route: {:controller=>"events", :action=>"show", :id=>"monthly-library-meeting-downtown-and-highlands"} --> is scheduled for Tuesday, September 18 from 6-7:30 p.m. in the conferencing center on the seventh floor of

Richard Bray September 19, 2012 at 07:50 AM
Residents need to be very concerned about the process and be watchful: 1) The city has refused to allow any representation on the Library Advisory Board from the 76% majority-backed Citizens for Cedar River Library. 2) An all-volunteer group of technical experts has offered their service to the city and KCLS to collaborate in the design process in order monitor costs and suggest cost-savings to protect Renton tax payers. Thus far they have not been engaged in collaboration. 3) This is the same KCLS that inflated the original Renton city downtown library estimate by $3 million--including wanting to eliminate our library entrance over the Cedar River. 4) KCLS seems to have a cookie-cutter approach to libraries that would reduce the useable space and materials at our current downtown library. Renton residents’ desires should drive the process --not KCLS preferences. Residents want a library that meets the needs of all people, one that provides materials for young and old alike, fully utilizes all space, and is a gathering place for the community. It’s only fair that there be representation on crucial groups and that taxpayers’ dollars be well spent. A city with a $5 million deficit needs all the help it can get!


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