The library purchased the Mastic Beach Village Hall for branch expansion and is entertaining asking WFSD for the Little Red Schoolhouse as well
The Mastics-Moriches-Shirley Community Library has not been renovated since 1995, though there have been discussions to remediate since 2011.
A 2014 asbestos survey indicates that the facility is in desperate need of repair, which emphasizes the necessity of repair. Boiler replacement, roof replacement and repair and steel repair are also featured on the renovations list.
The library recently hired an architecture firm and plans to pay for the renovation expense with capital reserves. Also with its recent purchase of the Mastic Beach Village Hall building and talks of acquiring the Little Red Schoolhouse in Moriches from the William Floyd School District, options for branch expansion enter into the fold.
A representative from Sandpebble Builders, the hired construction project-management firm, presented three ideas for remediation at a meeting in the library auditorium Monday evening. Each idea inevitably involves a reduction or lapse in library services for an undetermined period of time though in the ballpark of six months to one year.
One option focuses on renovations to the existing building and does not involve the additions of the village hall nor the district-owned schoolhouse. The audience of residents expressed was not a viable option for residents traveling from Moriches who desire a closer location to them.
Another option involves those essential renovations and includes the acquisition of the Little Red Schoolhouse as a satellite branch. This addition would satisfy those Moriches residents who would rather not travel as far west, though residents in the audience said the schoolhouse is still too far west to their liking.
The majority of library patrons reside south of Montauk Highway, according to a library press release regarding the purchase of the Mastic Beach Village Hall for $100,000.
“This was an amazing opportunity for the library to expand our presence in the Mastic Beach community at an extremely affordable price,” said Joseph Maiorana, president of the library board.
The third option calls for the opening of a branch at the previous village hall in Mastic Beach in addition to the renovations to the existing library and acquisition of the Little Red Schoolhouse.. Community leaders of the Mastic-Shirley peninsula welcome the idea of a southern branch considering the changeover of a slew of public services since the Village of Mastic Beach was absorbed by the Town of Brookhaven in 2017.
“By putting a branch in Mastic Beach, the library has decided to be part of our community’s revitalization and rebirth,” said Frank Fugarino, president of Pattersquash Creek Civic Association. “This facility will provide much needed services to residents in our community. The facility is also large enough to assist with community meetings and outdoor activities.”
The representative noted that the construction of a new building at the current location is on the table. The library must plan to propose a new public referendum before resolving that decision.
“Each of these options will be looked at carefully,” Maiorana said. ”Our goal will be to continue to work with the community to come up with a building plan that the community can support and afford.”