Whitehall News

'Brutal' winter impedes work on new library

New Whitehall branch could be delayed until 2015, officials say

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Construction of the new Whitehall branch of the Columbus Metropolitan Library has been suspended until the start of April.

Ben Zenitsky, the library's marketing and communications specialist, said many construction projects throughout central Ohio have been postponed or sidetracked due to the continuing snow and cold.

"The work just can't be done in these weather conditions," said Zenitsky. "It's not just us. It's everywhere."

Zenitsky said Turner Construction Co. is expected to resume work on the project April 1.

"The ground is simply too wet to install the building's foundation and slab," Zenitsky said.

The new 20,000-square-foot Whitehall branch will be built at 4445 E. Broad St. and will replace the current 7,466-square-foot library, opened in 1959, at 4371 E. Broad St.

Ground was broken Sept. 10, 2013, and the new $7.6 million branch was slated to open by the end of next summer.

But the opening has been pushed back to late 2014 or possibly early 2015.

"It's all dependent on the weather," Zenitsky said. "This is absolutely brutal weather we've been having."

The current branch will remain open as long as necessary. It will close only after the new branch is fully operational, after which the library will sell the lot and the structure, Zenitsky said.

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