Tuesday, September 11, 2012

255/366... September 11/12... closed

Last night's 3rd floor fire closed the downtown Central Library today. The building will be open tomorrow, except for the 3rd floor. It will remain closed, probably for several weeks, while emergency crews continue an extensive clean-up of smoke damaged items.

Here's the Calgary Herald write up:

Fire Damages Unique Books, computers at Central Library - Calgary Herald

By Eva Ferguson, Calgary Herald September 11, 2012 9:06 PM

A third-floor bathroom fire at the downtown Central Library caused severe smoke damage to unique book collections and a high-tech computer lab.

Library staff say a significant portion of the 180,000 books in business, sciences and social sciences suffered significant damage, along with several computers, furniture and shelving.

All are expected to take several weeks to clean up. After being closed all day Tuesday, the Central Library branch will reopen Wednesday morning, except for the third floor, which is expected to be closed for several weeks.

“We’re going to have to take a lot of time to clean it out, to air everything out,” said library spokesman Grant Kaiser.

“But it’s very bad news for the library. It is an extensive amount of damage and the restoration will be expensive, a significant amount of money.”

Early Monday evening a woman entered the third-floor washroom of the library and deliberately set a fire.

Fire crews were able to quickly put out the blaze. But significant amounts of smoke set into the floor’s book collection, computers, carpeting and furniture.

Kaiser said the third-floor materials were especially important to the city’s library collection since the downtown branch holds a lot of “one-offs” or unique materials not available anywhere else in the city.

“We also hold a lot of our business directories there, for the downtown business community, that you can’t find anywhere else,” he added.

The Calgary Public Library has hired a professional restoration company to clean the books, the computers and the remainder of the third floor.

Kaiser expects the costs to tally well over $100,000.

© Copyright (c) The Calgary Herald

No comments:

Post a Comment