Santa Monica's New Pico Library Gearing Up For Early 2014 Opening

Friday, 23 Aug 2013, 9:11:00 AM

Parimal M. Rohit

Construction of the Pico Branch Library is about 50 percent complete with completion scheduled for early 2014.
Photo by Brenton Garen
Construction of the Pico Branch Library is about 50 percent complete with completion scheduled for early 2014.

Santa Monica’s fifth public library branch has taken a few steps closer to being realized as council members approved last week furniture procurement, an automated system, and additional construction funding for the Pico Branch Library.

All three items and expenditures were approved Aug. 13 as part of the council’s Consent Calendar.

The biggest line item approved was for $363,000 and amends the original construction contract to allow for more work to be done on the Pico Branch Library, which is already being built in Virginia Avenue Park.

According to City staff, the additional funds will cover the installation of a rainwater harvesting system and some “unforeseen conditions.”

This being the third contract modification, the total price tag of the Pico Branch Library construction is now at $7,278,020.

Of the $363,000, City staff said $253,000 of that amount would be allocated to the rainwater harvesting system installation. The remaining $110,000 is set aside “to address future changes in the scope of work or unforeseen conditions.”

Council members also approved a professional services agreement for $156,197 to pay for the library’s furnishings.

City Hall awarded California-based Interior Office Solutions to provide furniture procurement services for the library. As part of the contract, Interior Office Solutions would order, warehouse, and install all furniture.

Interior Office Solutions previously provided furniture for Big Blue Bus, Rio Hondo College, and California State University – San Bernardino.

According to City staff, the team leaders and personnel working on the furniture for Pico Branch Library have previously furnished other libraries across the state, including Sierra Madre Library, San Marino’s Corwell Public Library, Mountain View Public Library near San Jose, Calif., and Oxnard Public Library.

Finally, council approved a $279,520 contract for Georgia-based Bibliotheca, LLC, to install an Automated Material Handling System, which includes key equipment and software, in the Pico Branch Library.

A bulk of the contract – $182,443 – is allocated to the provision of “sorting and conveyor equipment, computer software configuration services, hardware and peripherals, training, and a one-year warranty for … [the] Automated Materials Handling System.”

The remaining amount – $97,077 – covers the execution of four additional one-year contracts “to provide maintenance and support for the Automated Materials Handling System upon completion of the first year warranty term.”

“With an Automated Material Handling System (AMHS), patrons can feed their materials into return slots to be located both inside and outside the Pico Branch Library facility and have their borrowing record immediately reflect that the items have been returned. The system can accept returns during both open and closed hours,” City staff stated. “The efficiencies offered by the system would allow staff to focus efforts on the person-to-person customer service and program and event planning that are expected of today’s public library.”

City staff added construction of the Pico Branch Library is about 50 percent complete and should be done in early 2014. Construction began in Aug. 2012.

Pico Branch Library would be the fifth member of the Santa Monica Public Library system. Other branches already operational include Main Library (downtown), Ocean Park Branch, Fairview Branch, and Montana Avenue Branch.

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