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Give input on library

The Morgan Memorial Library is small and outdated, and the great staff there are punching well above their weight class by continuing to provide excellent services and programs in a building that no longer serves them or the community well.

Early results from a survey about the library show that 58% of respondents are driving to other libraries, even though the Morgan Memorial Library is closest to them. That’s a very telling statistic that underscores just how much this library needs to be updated.

So virtually everyone agrees that a new library for downtown Suffolk is needed. However, what that new building will eventually look like and what amenities and services it should include is a more nuanced discussion.

After many years in the plans, work is finally beginning on creating a new downtown library in Suffolk, and one of the first items on the agenda is that survey. We encourage everyone to fill it out. There’s also a virtual meeting later this month.

The library of the 21st century is no longer just a room full of books, although it’s definitely still that, too. It’s a place to research your genealogy; take your children to storytime; learn about, use and even borrow new technology; use the computers to type papers or apply for a job; discover a new hobby; get digital books and magazines without ever leaving home; and so much more. Libraries these days offer meeting spaces, a community gathering spot and more.

It will be active through July 15, and you can take it by going to suffolkpubliclibrary.com/291/New-Central-Library. The survey is also printable, or people can request a hard copy of it from the library and use the curbside service to pick it up from either Morgan Memorial Library or the North Suffolk Library. Verbal feedback can also be left at 514-7311, and additional written feedback can be emailed to libraryemail@suffolkva.us. The survey deadline is July 15.

The virtual meeting will take place at 7 p.m. July 28 through Zoom. A link can be found on the library’s website.