Work Progressing On Two New Public Libraries In Frederick County

One will be finished next year; design work on another will begin next month.


Frederick, Md (KM). Construction is scheduled to be finished in January, 2018 on a new public library for Walkersville. Ground was broken on the project in May, which will be located at South Glade Road across from Creamery Park. “It will replace a 2,500-square-foot library with 15,000 square feet,” says Darrell Batson, the Director of the Frederick County Public Library system.

In addition to books, magazines, newspapers and other publications, Batson says the new library will also have other features. “Instead of putting the kids on the floor for story time, they’ll actually be a story time room. Actually a small community meeting room will be in the library. It will have a special teen zone. It will have far more study rooms than libraries of that size,” he says.

When it comes to construction or renovation,  Batson says the one thing citizens want from their public libraries are meeting rooms. “There’s lot of organizations, lots of groups. and there’s always a shortage of space to meet,” he says. “So that’s’ really one of the really popular services that we offer.”

Design work will begin soon on a Myersville public library. “They’ve got one gungho mayor….Mayor {Wayne} Creddick…up there in Myersville. And he and I have been working together for a long time and we’re finally getting to the point where, as of July, start the design. And then we will construct a smaller community library, about 7,000 square feet,” says Batson.

The money for the project was placed in the County’s Capital Improvements Program. It will be located at Harp Place Park, the site of a former elementary school that at one time served as the town hall. It has been demolished.

Batson says construction is expected to begin in July, 2019. He says it will have a collection of books and other publications, but it won’t be as extensive as other public libraries of that size. “A current collection, it won’t be in-depth like our larger facilities,” he says. “It will have current novels, have some non-fiction, the highly popular cooking and gardening, things like that.”

But patrons can borrow books from other libraries in the county and the state if their local branch doesn’t have it on its shelves.

In prior years, under the Commissioners’ form of government, local elected officials didn’t put a lot of money into the public library system, and many Frederick County residents went to Carroll and Montgomery Counties to get their library services. “When I first came here, you could have taken all of our little branch libraries outside of the C. Burr Artz one, and they would have fit into one branch of Carroll County. That was the square footage we had available to our citizens throughout the county. My challenge was actually giving them adequate facilities,” he says.

“Things have changed,” Batson says.


By Kevin McManus