The new facility will look something like this artist rendering.
On Saturday, Aug. 22, officials are breaking ground on the Lorton Library renovation project, modernizing a community facility and creating a
Lorton Community Center and Library
Saturday, Aug. 22, 10 a.m.
9520 Richmond Highway
Lorton, VA 22079
catalyst for community improvement to this section of Fairfax County.
The Lorton Library is located on Richmond Highway, and shares a space with the Lorton Community Action Center, so a new and improved library will also provide a well-needed county resource to this part of Lorton.
The renovated branch will be 60 percent larger than its current 10,000 square feet, and the layout will be more efficient for customer use, the county said. The building design will meet Fairfax County green building and Americans with Disabilities standards and be completed to achieve LEED Silver certification.
In addition to energy-saving features, the library will have an expanded children’s space, a teen room with gaming station, a Wi-Fi/laptop bar and other seating areas for wireless device users, group study rooms, two conference rooms and a meeting room available for before and after-hours use.
The Lorton Library branch will be co-located with the Lorton Community Action Center and the brand-new Lorton Senior Center, which will include a senior center, teen space, sensory room, art room and gymnasium. The Department of Public Works and Environmental Services is managing design and construction of the new shared facility.
The cost estimate for the entire project is $27,230,000, according to the county. The co-locating plan does create savings, said Supervisor Dan Storck (D-Mount Vernon) “Completing these two projects in coordination will save the County over $1 million,” Storck said.
“I envision the new site to be an inviting and engaging place where all of us will feel a sense of community and wellbeing – the basis for building even stronger connections with our neighbors,” added Storck. The Fairfax County Public Library department said that “these adjacent facilities will leverage synergies and provide programs and activities for individuals of all ages and abilities throughout the community.”
Nationwide Libraries Transform
Co-locating amenities fits in with a bigger picture the American Libraries Association’s programs called "Libraries Transform," which addresses the place a library has in today’s community. “Libraries today are less about what they have for people and more about what they do for and with people,” the ALA stated. Libraries Transform program provides an opportunity to position the local library as vital to the people it serves and the community at large. The library is an indispensable resource that transforms people’s lives and the community itself, the ALA said.
The Kings Park Library in Fairfax County is co-located with the Braddock District Supervisor’s office, and this has been a good arrangement through the years. For example, the library’s extra meeting and exhibit spaces are convenient for the supervisor’s office to use as well. There are long term library plans in Kingstowne as well, and sometime in the future, the county is planning a new library building that will also house the Franconia Police Station, the Lee District Supervisor’s office, the Kingstowne Center for Active Adults, the Franconia Museum, and a child care center.
The Lorton Library renovation will include LEED sustainability features like bioretention rain garden and an underground stormwater facility, native plants, solar panels, electric vehicle charging stations, and energy efficient systems.
According to Fairfax County, construction began in July 2020, and will be completed in the spring of 2022.