.Capitola Branch Library Upgrade Project Moves Ahead

Work is moving forward on the Capitola Branch Library on the corner of Clares Street at Wharf Road.

The more than $13 million project will transform the previous 4,300-square-foot temporary library structure into an 11,700-square-foot hub with a community room, an expanded children’s wing, study and reading rooms, reading “nooks,” an outdoor reading deck, a fireplace and a space for teens.

Measure S, which voters passed in 2016 to fund library construction and upgrade projects in Santa Cruz County, provided $10 million, while the city’s general fund and redevelopment money added $2.6 million. The nonprofit group Friends of the Capitola Branch Library helped fundraise another $750,000.

An estimated 60,000 people visit the branch each year, making it one of the busiest libraries in the county.

“We are looking forward to opening the library this summer,” says Steve Jesberg, public works director for Capitola. “I think our community has enjoyed watching the project come to life as walls have gone up, and people are excited to see the finished product.”

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Megan Blackwell, marketing manager for Otto Construction, said Otto is the general contractor for the job. Initial plans called for the library completion this summer.

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Tarmo Hannula
Tarmo Hannula has been the lead photographer with The Pajaronian newspaper in Watsonville since 1997. He also reports on a wide range of topics, including police, fire, environment, schools, the arts and events. A fifth generation Californian, Tarmo was born in the Mother Lode of the Sierra (Columbia) and has lived in Santa Cruz County since the late 1970s. He earned a BA from UC Santa Cruz and has traveled to 33 countries.
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