All Spokane County Library District locations will be closed on Monday, February 15, to observe Presidents’ Day.

Park/Library Conceptual Site Plan FAQs

Who owns the property?
How did the Library District become partnered with the Parks Department?
What is the size of the property?
Where will the funding come from for this plan?
When will this project be done?
Why do we need a new Spokane Valley Library?
What kind of library do they want to build?
If the new library is built, what will happen to the current Spokane Valley Library?
What type of park is being considered?

Who owns the property?

The City has purchased the property and the Library District paid for 2.5 acres, with what is, in a sense, a refundable down payment. The Spokane County Library District Board of Trustees entered into an inter-local agreement with City of Spokane Valley in September 2012 outlining the terms and conditions for purchasing property on Sprague Avenue for the purpose of developing a library and park.

If the Library District can obtain funding through a bond issue by 2017 to build a new Spokane Valley Library, the library will be built.

If the funding doesn’t come through, the Library District money is refunded and the City will use the entire property to expand the current Balfour Park.

How did the Library District become partnered with the Parks Department?

In January 2012, the Library Board came to the City indicating an interest in partnering in a park/library. The property at Sprague and Herald was for sale, but the owner wouldn’t divide. The City was excited at the idea and did its due diligence with a traffic study, exploring infrastructure costs, analysis, and began working on an inter-local agreement.

The City purchased the property in October 2012. The Library has reimbursed the City for 2.5 acres with the option of purchasing one more acre, if needed for the library plan. Footprint of property will be decided by the process of public input and planning sessions through the summer of 2013.

What is the size of the property?

The area purchased is 8.4 acres. The Library District has purchased 2.5 of the acres with the option of purchasing one additional acre, depending on the final library/park design.

Once complete and combined with the current Balfour Park, the total park size will be approximately 11 acres.

Where will the funding come from for this plan?

The money to build the library is not available at this time. Before asking voters for funding, a plan to show what the library/park will be like must be developed. The library has 5 years to come up with the money to build. If not approved, the City of the Spokane Valley will build a park.

Costs for the plan development are being shared equally by the City and the Library District.

When will this project be done?

Preliminary plan concepts were generated for the May 20, 2013 meeting. These plans are available for viewing and comments accepted until June 7, 2013. The architects will continue refining the plan throughout the summer. On September 12, 2013 another public meeting will be held at the library/park location to show the proposed improvements.

The Library District must break ground by 2017. If a bond issue does not pass, the City will use the entire property to expand the current Balfour Park.

The City, at its own expense, may use the site for civic events prior to the District commencing construction activities.

Why do we need a new Spokane Valley Library?

The Spokane Valley Library is 58 years old. It was remodeled in 1986, but the population has outgrown the building.

The current Library is spread out over three floors and is inefficient, both in requirements for staffing and energy use.

The current library building doesn’t allow for interaction between the indoor and outdoor settings as it has no outdoor areas.

What kind of library do they want to build?

The District intends to build a one-story building that will be a minimum of 30,000 square feet with an open, large meeting room.

The Library District has learned a lot of lessons from the current Valley Library, and intends to build only one level so that it is easier and less expensive to staff efficiently and make the most effective use of space. Multiple story buildings need space for stairs, elevators, multiple bathrooms, etc.

If the new library is built, what will happen to the current Spokane Valley Library?

No decision has been made yet.

What type of park is being considered?

There are three different kinds of parks; regional, neighborhood, and community. Currently, Balfour Park is a neighborhood park that serves the immediate area and includes play structures. The library/park project will transform Balfour into a community park that continues to serve the neighborhood, but also serves on a larger parcel, located near heavily traveled arterials, allows for group activities that are more civic in nature and not necessarily athletic.