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Library Renovations



Library renovations were completed at the end of April! You can find more information on using the meeting rooms here.




The Friends of the Library Bookshop is Now Taking Donations


As part of the library’s continuous effort to improve services to the community, we are undergoing a renovation to the first floor meeting rooms and auditorium.

Dewberry, an Elgin based architecture firm, is leading the renovation.  As seen it its current list of projects (a few local projects in Deerfield and Glenview), Dewberry has developed a unique specialty in library renovations. Pepper Construction is the construction management company that has been retained to oversee the construction. They were involved with the library renovations in 1999/2000 and 2009.

Please view the video to see the project:

The renovation will address some of the concerns and interests that arose in our last two community surveys:

  • Better technology in meeting rooms for presentations
  • Installation of RF Hearing Assistance Systems and other ADA enhancements
  • Digital Projection System for movies presentations
  • Comfortable theater style seating in auditorium
  • Improved acoustics in meeting rooms and auditorium
  • HVAC improvements


Upcoming Timeline

  • Late February, 2014 - Bid documents are anticipated to be available
  • Early March, 2014 - Pre-bid meeting
  • Late March, 2014 - Public bid opening
  • April 2014 Board Meeting - Approve contractors to work on project
  • Late April, 2014 - Construction begins
  • Late March, 2015 – Estimated project completion date


Construction Phasing Timeline

Phase 1A – Auditorium – April 2014 to December 2014

Phase 1B – East & West Vestibule – June 2014 to September 2014

Phase 2 – HVAC & Carpet – 2nd floor - July 2014 to October 2014

Phase 3 – North Vestibule – Technical Services – September 2014

Phase 4 – Site Work – Parking Lot – October 2014 to November 2014

Phase 5 – Lobby – January 2015 to March 2015


Frequently Asked Questions

Q. What’s going on at the Northbrook Public Library?
A. The library is moving forward with a project to renovate and refresh the meeting rooms and auditorium. Construction is expected to begin in late April 2014 and be completed by the end of March 2015.

Q. Will the project enlarge the building?
A. Yes. The building’s overall size will increase 1882 square feet. The expansion will be kept within the current footprint of the Library.

Q. Who decided to do this project?
A. The Northbrook Public Library Board of Trustees, the citizen body responsible for the governance of the library, has been planning this for several years. Beginning in 2012, the Library Board started the formal planning process for this project. One of the major outcomes embodied in this project is a commitment to enhancing the library building and its contents as an attractive destination for the community.

Q. How much will it cost?
A. The Library Board has allocated $6,500,000 for the project. This will pay for planning, design, construction, furniture, fixtures, and equipment.

Q. Where’s the money coming from?
A. Bonds were issued in July 2013 to pay for the renovation project.

Q. What happens if the project goes over budget?
A. Rigorous professional cost estimates are part of the design process. As the Library Board reviews each phase of the design, it evaluates the estimates to make sure that the project can actually be carried out. In addition, contingency allowances will be incorporated into the detailed construction and equipment budgets. These safeguards will enable the project’s managers to respond to unforeseen conditions. If some element of the project is too expensive, it will not be done.

Q. Will property taxes be increased to pay for this project?
A. Yes, due to the increase in debt.

Q. Who is working on this project?
A. Dewberry, an Elgin based architecture firm, was chosen by the Library Board following a rigorous competitive process. The architects’ experience with library renovation was a key factor in their selection.  Pepper Construction of Barrington, Illinois, was selected as Construction Manager by the Library Board. The construction management firm will carry out the approved design and be responsible for selecting and supervising subcontractors and vendors. In addition, library staff will continue their deep involvement.

Q. What is the present status of the work?
A. A notice to bidders was published in the newspaper in February 2014.  On March 6th bidders attended a mandatory prebid meeting to learn about the project.  Bids for the project were due on March 20th at 2:00pm.  There was an official bid opening at that time at the Library .

Q. Will the library close during construction?
A. Every effort will be made to minimize disruption of service. The project will be carried out in several phases so that the Library can continue to operate. Library meeting rooms and auditorium will not be available for public use after March, 2014 and some area may be temporally closed for safety concerns.

Q. Have any unforeseen issues arose during the design process?
A. Yes. During the construction manager review of the schematic design documents, Pepper determined that a major overhaul to the HVAC system was needed to be in compliance with code. The cost related to the HVAC overhaul is approximately $1,000,000.