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Library expansion picks up steam?
Transit station may open door to provide more book space
The transit station may make it possible to add book space at the Manteca Library. - photo by HIME ROMERO

The new transit station being built on Moffat Boulevard could lead to an expansion of the cramped Manteca Library.

That’s because the 7,000-aquare-foot two-story station planned for Moffat at South Main Street will include a large community room complete with kitchen facilities just off public plaza.

Manteca Councilman John Harris believes that could open the door to make changes to the city-owned Manteca Library on Center Street to better serve community needs until such time a new facility can be built.

The concept is to convert the existing McFall Room at the library that’s used for community purposes into additional book rack space. Harris noted such a move would probably require adding on to provide a room for library programs such as story times.

“There won’t be money any time soon for a new library,” Harris said.

Manteca barely missed being awarded funding assistance for a new library twice from bond monies approved by state voters. A new library carries a price tag approaching $20 million.

Harris believes the city could spend significantly less - perhaps less than $1 million - to expand on site to address library needs on an interim basis.

Harris noted it would be far from ideal but it could address some needs while the city works toward a long-range replacement.

“It could take years,” Harris said of a new library.

Harris hopes the council will revive the citizens library committee to look at workable proposals to add to the current library.