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Residents rally to keep West Kildonan Library from moving into mall

More than 150 community members gathered at the West Kildonan Library Tuesday in a rally against the city's plan to relocate the space. Friends of West Kildonan Library Coalition

Residents against the city’s plan to move the West Kildonan Library rallied Tuesday in hopes the book is not closed on the current location.

A proposal at City Hall is recommending the library be moved from its current Jefferson Avenue spot to a space the city would lease inside the Garden City Shopping Centre.

The proposal will be voted on at Executive Policy Committee on Wednesday.

READ MORE: Backlash over proposal to relocate West Kildonan Library

The city says the current branch, built in 1967, struggles to accomodate the needs for library users and has limited parking.

But it’s a unpopular plan among some residents who gathered outside the current space on Tuesday.

“Throwing money at an inaccessible shopping mall is the wrong choice – let’s reinvest here in West Kildonan,” Evan Krosney, Co-Chair of the Friends of West Kildonan Library Coalition said.

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“You come to the library to find information, but almost more importantly it is where you find community. This library has become part of our community, and we are fighting for it,” Steve Snyder, past chair of the Seven Oaks Residents’ Association added.

He says the space lacks exterior windows, greenspace and a dedicated exterior entrance and residents have told him the mall lacks safe pedestrian pathways to connect the mall to city sidewalks.

The coalition is calling on Winnipeg Mayor Brian Bowman to meet with them and listen to community voices before making a decision on the proposal.

 

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