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Council being told of downtown Edmonton library problems in private

Proposed drawing of Stanley A. Milner Library revitalization. Edmonton Public Library

Edmonton city council spent part of its final meeting of the term behind closed doors, discussing the Stanley A. Milner Library replacement work.

There is some concern on council about the project.

No one is saying what’s wrong, all that’s being said publicly is the problem is going to the library board Tuesday evening.

“The intent is, it will be made public as soon as we hear some more information from the library board which meets tonight,” said Mayor Don Iveson as council began its final meeting by adopting the agenda.

READ MORE: New renderings show Edmonton’s Stanley A. Milner Library after revitalization

Councillor Michael Oshry had asked why the library item was in private.

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“There is an element to this that is around negotiations with a contractor with the work that we’re talking about,” city manager Linda Cochrane said. “So that’s the private element. As well as the timing the library board meeting.”

Renderings of Edmonton's Stanley A. Milner Library are released before construction begins on the facility in Jan. 2017. Edmonton Public Library, Credit
Renderings of Edmonton's Stanley A. Milner Library are released before construction begins on the facility in Jan. 2017. Edmonton Public Library, Credit
Renderings of Edmonton's Stanley A. Milner Library are released before construction begins on the facility in Jan. 2017. Edmonton Public Library, Credit
Renderings of Edmonton's Stanley A. Milner Library are released before construction begins on the facility in Jan. 2017. Edmonton Public Library, Credit
Renderings of Edmonton's Stanley A. Milner Library are released before construction begins on the facility in Jan. 2017. Edmonton Public Library, Credit
A rendering of Edmonton's Stanley A. Milner Library which goes under construction in January 2017. Edmonton Public Library, Credit
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Designs of the Stanley A. Milner Library revitilization, May 8, 2014. Courtesy: Teeple Architects and Architecture Arndt Tkalcic Bengert
Proposed drawing of Stanley A. Milner Library revitalization. Edmonton Public Library
Proposed drawing of Stanley A. Milner Library revitalization. Edmonton Public Library
Proposed drawing of Stanley A. Milner Library revitalization. Edmonton Public Library
Designs of the Stanley A. Milner Library revitilization, May 8, 2014. Courtesy: Teeple Architects and Architecture Arndt Tkalcic Bengert
The Stanley A. Milner Library held a graffiti open house Saturday, Dec. 17, 2016. Credit: Edmonton Public Library

More is expected if council’s final meeting stretches into Wednesday.

“We’ll get that advice in due course in private, but once decisions are made, then those decisions will be rendered in public no later than tomorrow because those decisions will have to be made tomorrow,” said the mayor.

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A source suggested the old library may have had asbestos issues, but added that the project is not behind schedule or delayed.

READ MORE: Downtown Edmonton library moves to Enterprise Square during renos

That hasn’t been confirmed by the city.

The $62.5-million renovation of the Stanley A. Milner Library includes an exterior makeover, asbestos removal, mechanical and electrical upgrades, and floor-to-ceiling second floor windows. The work is expected to take three years, with the new facility set to open in 2020.