No one is exactly sure when it was built, but a retaining wall along the Winter Street side of the Delaware County District Library needs some repairs -- and quickly.

Library Director George Needham said a routine facilities inspection revealed a crack in the wall that holds up a large embankment on the building's northern side.

The wall also appears to be tipping off its base, he said.

The library board of trustees passed an emergency resolution Aug. 29 to waive competitive bidding to speed up the wall's repair, with an expenditure of up to $55,000.

Most of the library at 84 E. Winter St. was built in 1992, Needham said, when no current library employees were working there. As a result, he said, it's unknown when the retaining wall was built.

Library officials do know the library site earlier housed an auto-repair garage, an auto-parts store and a supermarket, he said, but it's not known if the wall existed then.

The first step will be an engineering study, he said, with the goal of completing the repair by winter.

The inspection was scheduled to gauge what preventative maintenance the library's branches might need, he said.

The Delaware, Powell and Ostrander branches "were all built within three years of each other," he said. "They're all hitting the same age and the same issues" -- most of them relatively minor, such as paint or trim.

The problem with the wall, he said, was spotted right away.

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