Sites pinpointed for new library HQ

Galway’s library service needs an investment to the tune of €15-€20 million in the years ahead, city councillors were told this week.

In a presentation from Galway County Librarian, Peter Rabbitt, and Director of Services for Galway County Council, Peter Gavican, councillors were told of how the current structure of leasing the city library premises at the Hynes Building needs to be addressed as a matter of urgency.

Galway City Library is provided by Galway County and City Councils and it is one of the few library services in the country that is not housed in a local authority-owned premises.

The council were told of how the service needs an investment in their built infrastructure to the tune of €15m to €20m.

The council operates three full-time libraries in the city, based in Ballybane, Westside and the main library on St Augustine Street. Their administrative headquarters are situated in Island House – also leased premises.

The cost of the lease stands at €250,000 per annum, with Mr Gavican pointing out that they had achieved a reduction of €40,000 in recent times.

While he agreed that it was “dead money”, he dismissed any suggestion that the council was not getting value for it.

For more on the city’s library services, see this week’s Galway City Tribune