From left to right pictured:

Ward 4 Councilman John Grech, Councilman-at-large Ray Guttmann, Sari Feldman, CCPL Executive Director, Ward 3 Councilman Michael Ference, Mayor Gary Starr, Ward 2 Councilman Matt McGregor, Council President Matt Castelli, Ward 1 Councilman Bill Meany and Councilman-at-large Dave Bortolotto

As Mayor of Middleburg Heights, I saw an important need to build a new 21st century, modern library and that began with my purchase from the Berea School District, on behalf of the taxpayers’ of Middleburg Heights, of 10.752 acres of land.

With the urging of myself and the support of our city council, the Cuyahoga County Public Library has committed to building a $7.5 million dollar public library for our all-American city.

The city engaged in many collaborative discussions, site planning and architectural design with the library, their staff and architects resulting in their agreement to build a new 16,000 square foot library on the former site of the old C. A. Thomas elementary school.

The city has also agreed to sell 3.5 acres of said real estate to the Cuyahoga County Public Library System for the exorbitant amount of $1.00 with the condition that the library system would agree to construct and operate a public library on this site.

As I have quoted the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, when they commissioned a study about the relevancy of libraries in the 21st century — as it relates to the internet, libraries are even more important than they were in years past.

With that said, I want to again thank the members of city council, Sari Feldman, the library staff, the library Board of Trustees and our city employees who have now made this important and vital cultural institution, a reality that will be shared with the taxpayers of our all-American city of Middleburg Heights.