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Gritters Library finally gets the green light for a rebuild!

exterior rendering of the new Gritters Library
March 16, 2023

 March 14 - By a 5-0 vote, the Cobb County Board of Commissioners cleared the way for building a new Gritters Library and Northeast Cobb Community Center.  The vote culminated a three-year effort to replace a library built in the early 70s that suffered from multiple serious plumbing issues and mold and mildew concerns.

The rebuild was originally a 2016 SPLOST project pushed by District 3 Commissioner JoAnn Birrell, who never gave up advocating for the library and its dedicated users despite numerous challenges.

“This would not have happened without your fierce advocacy,” Chairwoman Lisa Cupid told  Commissioner Birrell.  “I know a number of citizens in District 3 are grateful for our action today.”

“This has been a long day coming,” Commissioner Birrell said.  “I’d like to thank our Public Services Director and the Library Director for working with me to make this happen.  The Library Board of Trustees and the foundation were persistent in coming before the board to insist that this happen.  This is an essential facility for the community.”

Click here for a key facts data map about Gritters Library, its location, and nearby libraries.

Commissioner Birrell committed more than $112,000 from the county’s fund balance to reach the new goal.  Other funding sources, including a state grant and ARPA funds, were used to get the project to the estimated $9.8 million cost. 

Click here for the agenda item with the breakdown of funding used for the Gritters Library and NE Cobb Community Center project.

The original groundbreaking happened in December of 2021 when the cost of replacing Gritters was estimated at $6.8 million.  You can watch that ceremony and learn more about the history of Gritters by clicking here.  But the cost of materials and labor spurred by the pandemic skyrocketed, meaning the original budget was over $2 million short. 

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