New central library plans for digital future
Calgary’s newest library will be built for the digital future, but the city’s head librarian says that doesn’t mean an end to checking out books.
City council got an update Tuesday on the $245-million library planned for the East Village to replace the Central Library.
The plans include capping the new main library's books at 600,000, with that number diminishing in the future.
"We don't know when the pendulum will swing, if indeed it ever swings. What we do know is that there is an increasing role for digital resources to play, but there will always be a place for books," said Ellen Humphrey, the interim CEO for the Calgary Public Library.
Ald. Peter Demong raised his concerns about books eventually disappearing off the shelves. But Humphrey says that won't happen.
"We teach children how to handle a book," she said. "How to treat a book with care, how to respect a book. Many parents are interested in their children being exposed to books in libraries because they get all kinds of computer stuff everyplace else."
Digital use at public libraries doubled from 2011 to 2012, but still only represents four per cent of the library's activities.