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16 November 2012
Funding to carry out essential structural repairs to the fabric of Kensington Central Library was approved last night (Thursday 15 November) by the Royal Borough. Built in the 1960s the library's mechanical and electrical systems have exceeded their life expectancy and a major overhaul is now required. Details include modernising the electrics, installing a new energy-efficient ventilation system, new hot and cold water systems, new rainwater services and refurbishing the lifts. Essential repairs to the roof will also be carried out. A total of £5.8m has been earmarked for the project which will ensure that the building can continue to meet the needs of the community for at least the next twenty years. The works will create improved office facilities for library staff and also turn underused parts into further offices, unlocking the potential for renting much needed office space to the local business community. Councillor Elizabeth Campbell, Cabinet Member for Library Services, said: "These works to Kensington Central Library are essential and needed to resolve major problems which reactive repairs can no longer correct. "We are proud that during such turbulent economic times we can continue to make the necessary investment to ensure our libraries remain a useful resource for local people." Due to the scale of the repairs there may be some disruption to library services. The Council is committed to keeping this to an absolute minimum and as much work as possible will take place outside library opening times. Any disruption to services will be publicised well in advance. Visit www.rbkc.gov.uk/centralworks for the latest information and to register for e-updates. These works follow the refurbishment of most of the library's public areas and users are now benefiting from the introduction of self-service technology which makes checking out and returning books easier, better computer facilities, new books, a revamped Local Studies area and a new young people's zone on the ground floor.
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