It’s a massive undertaking already more than two years years in the making, and while Edmontonians eagerly await the February opening of the Stanley A. Milner Library, the Edmonton Public Library unveiled plans for a surprise meant for the city to open 100 years from now: a time capsule.
The time capsule, which is to be opened on Valentine’s Day in 2119, contains love letters to the library and other mementos, and will be sealed in the walls of the overhauled facility.
“The time capsule is another exciting feature of the revitalized Milner Library, and one that symbolizes this city’s longstanding commitment to its public libraries — as shown by the many love notes we received to include in the capsule,” EPL CEO Pilar Martinez said in a statement on Tuesday.
The capsule is meant to be opened exactly 99 years after the renovated library opens this winter, with a grand opening planned for Feb. 14, 2020.
View photos taken at the Stanley A. Milner Library on Tuesday in the gallery below.
The library is undergoing a major renovation to bring it into the 21st century. The job includes an exterior makeover, asbestos removal, mechanical and electrical upgrades, and floor-to-ceiling second-floor windows.
The library will feature an expanded “Makerspace,” 28,000 square feet of community meeting space, a high-tech theatre, a multi-storey interactive simulation wall and the children’s area will triple in size.
“I think what I’m seeing is our vision becoming a reality,” Martinez said.
“Just the amount of natural light and the openness with the floor cutouts is going to be so inspiring to our public library users and our community.”
The library has temporarily been relocated to Enterprise Square. In September, the EPL will take possession of the Milner building and spend the fall and winter restocking it with its collections.
Earlier this year, the provincial government said the estimated final cost of the makeover is about $84.5 million.
WATCH BELOW: (From May 2018) The federal and provincial governments have provided more money to fuel the renovations at downtown Edmonton’s Stanley Milner Library. Albert Delitala explains.
The downtown library first opened in 1967 and was renamed the Stanley A. Milner Library in 1996.
— With files from Global News’ Sarah Kraus and 630 CHED’s Kirby Bourne