With the Carnegie Library in need of a new location, could space on the property that now also houses the be the answer?
The idea developed by Suffolk Leg. Rob Calarco was discussed at Monday’s Patchogue Village Board of Trustees meeting. However, issues regarding parking and future uses of the historic library were raised by some at the meeting.
Calarco, D-Patchogue, asking the County Legislature to allow the library to move on to the Main Street property that now houses the court.
The effort to move the historic structure started back when it was revealed that the library was in danger of being knocked down because of high maintenance costs. The library currently sits on land owned by Tritec Real Estate Company, which as part of the New Village project plans to build of 291 apartments, 46,000 square feet of retail space and 18,000 square feet of office space.
As part of the agreement with the Village regarding the New Village project, Tritec is obligated to move the library at no cost to Patchogue Village.
Joseph Catropa, a senior architect from L.K. Mclean Associates, has been studying the building over the past few months, .
At Monday’s meeting, he displayed diagrams of a possible location for the library, placing it at the intersection of West Avenue and South Street. Catropa said that 13 spaces in the courthouse's parking lot may be lost in the move, but the possible relocation of the bus stop currently located there could lead to recovering some of the spaces.
“There is a lot of land in here that we can use and probably gain back a good amount of parking spaces,” he said.
Catropa added that renovating the 5,000 sq. ft. building, which would include updating sprinkler and mechanical systems as well as adding other modern features, could cost as much as $1 million.
One possible disadvantage to the move is that being located on county land may limit the types of private use at the building.
Village Trustee Gerard Crean met with Calarco Tuesday morning and said at that day’s Business Improvement District meeting that the County would likely only allow the building to take on a municipal or non-profit use on their property. Crean also said that under this, the building would remain in ownership of Patchogue Village on land that the County owns.
“It was always my intent that at the end of this process we would look to privatize that building," Crean said at Monday's meeting. "Put it back on the tax roll, allow private enterprise to be located into that building, and shift the burden of the rehabilitation costs from the village to private enterprise.”
In addition, one other potential solution was also discussed. Village Trustee Lori Devlin, who was not at Monday’s meeting, said in a written statement that she is working with Campbell Daglish of to obtain a grant that would allow the library to house the center’s media classes.
Calarco's resolution that would allow the County's attorney and superintendent of public works to enter into discussions with the Patchogue Village attorney will be discussed at the County Legislative meeting on March 13.