An artist’s rendering depicts the west entrance of the proposed new CMPL North Branch in Macomb Township. Construction is set to begin soon on the $18.5 million library.

An artist’s rendering depicts the west entrance of the proposed new CMPL North Branch in Macomb Township. Construction is set to begin soon on the $18.5 million library.

Photo provided by Jamie Morris


Final library plan, building permits approved in Macomb Township

Opening date moved to spring 2021

By: Alex Szwarc | Macomb Township Chronicle | Published October 22, 2019

MACOMB TOWNSHIP — Construction for a new Macomb Township library is yet to begin, but local leaders are excited the plan is progressing.

The final library plan was approved at the Oct. 9 Board of Trustees meeting. A couple weeks prior, the Town Center Committee met to review all applicable departments’ findings and recommended approval.

On Oct. 16, Clinton-Macomb Public Library learned that two parts of the building permit were approved, necessary for construction to commence. CMPL Director Larry Neal said the plan is for the library, south of 25 Mile Road on Broughton Road, to open in the spring of 2021.

“That is the green light to getting the ground moving,” Neal said.

Originally, library officials were hopeful it would open in fall 2020. The project architect is Quinn Evans Architects and the construction management firm is McCarthy & Smith.

Neal said the start of construction was delayed in the summer on the $18.5 million library.

“During the value engineering process, it was determined that a change in the design of the exterior walls from structural steel to bearing masonry walls could generate savings of nearly $450,000 without any noticeable effect on the building’s size or appearance,” he said.

Neal added the change simplifies the construction process and shortens the schedule.

Macomb Township is projected to exceed 90,000 residents by 2025. The current North Branch, at 24 Mile and Romeo Plank roads, has approximately 10,000 visits per month and has begun to outgrow the space available. The proposed building will be 28,485 square feet, twice the size of the current North Branch, which opened in 2001.

“Think about your life 15 years ago,” CMPL head of community relations, marketing and development Jamie Morris said. “A lot has changed in Macomb Township. (It) now has a big burst of homes and there’s more people and they need more space. Moving to a larger location that can accommodate more people and activities is reasonable at this point.”    

In July, the Macomb Township Board of Trustees approved for the township to assume all responsibility for right-of-way improvements along Broughton Road in front of the new library, a cost of over $800,000.

Draft floor plans and architect renderings call for a Carnegie style library.

“Macomb Township has a dream of taking a square mile and developing it into something special beyond standard suburban neighborhoods and create walkable squares that lead to a downtown,” Neal said. “It was a remarkable period in U.S. history when Andrew Carnegie was providing funding for communities to build their libraries. We wanted to incorporate that style of a Carnegie Library. My dream was, how do we bring the spirit of a Carnegie Library, but keep a functional 21st century library?”   

Neal said the interior of the library will be impressive.

“There will be a two-side lobby area, more formal in the front and then heavily used in the back,” he said. “The front has a 40-foot ceiling. The goal of that space is to give one a sense of arrival and where you can meet your neighbors.”

With an abundance of technology today, Neal still views reading and books as the number one service people come to a library for.

Other highlights of the library include six small study rooms, three large study rooms, a community commons gathering space, and USB outlets at most seating locations.

The 7.5-acre property where the library will be situated was gifted to CMPL by the township in November 2018. The project is funded through 30-year bonds with 3% interest, paid out of the library millage.

Neal said homeowners will not see an increase in property taxes.

For construction updates, visit cmpl.org/newnorth.