of Mariners Library in Newport Beach.
[Photo courtesy Joe Mozdzen]
Donna and John Crean Mariners Library, a branch of
Beach Public Library and the first Library
Bond Act co-located public library, celebrated its
grand opening April 20. The Library Bond Act board
awarded the library, one of 18 projects in the
bond act’s first application cycle,
approximately $3.2 million toward its project
total of approximately $5.2 million.
and a city park, the new Mariners Branch Library,
a facility that the Newport Beach Public Library
School District, will serve both neighborhood families and
children at the school.
As a co-located facility, the Mariners
Branch Library will maximize public dollars by
The library will serve as the students’
school library as well as a public library for the
local residents. At 15,305 square feet, it is more
than double the size of the former Mariners branch
built in 1963.
[Photo courtesy Joe
the April event outside the new facility, over
students, local residents, city, school, and
library officials gathered.
Welcoming students and the community to the
new library were Newport Beach Mayor Don Webb;
secretary of education, Marian Bergeson; board of
library trustees chairman, Dr. Harry Hamilton;
Newport-Mesa Unified School Board President David
Brooks, and California State Library Office of
Library Construction (OLC) consultant Barbara
told the crowd that the Mariners Branch Library is
one out of 45 projects to receive funds from the
state bond act grant program and the third library
to be completed.
inside the new library
according to its designers, is a “light-airy
space, with high ceilings and lots of natural
lighting, as well as comfortable
‘kid-friendly’ furniture, and computer
workstations designated for children, teen, and
The alluring new library, filled with
state-of-the-art materials and enthusiastic staff,
is already helping change how people, kids
particularly, see their local library.
the April opening, Mariners has seen a tremendous
increase in the number of customers.
Branch manager and librarian Mary Ellen
Bowman, who started at Mariners’ former facility
in 2002, says Mariners’ “traffic has increased
100%: we had 1300 customers the first day…[in
the tiny old library] on a good Saturday we would
see 600 customers at the most.”
Bowman attributes these winning numbers to
the fact that people like “hanging out” in
their library; adults, teens, and children want to
linger in spaces filled with computer stations,
texts, and even customized furniture.
Branch Library is already sparking a lifelong
library “habit” in its youngest customers.
Because Mariners is a co-located facility, Bowman
says children are more closely identifying the
library with their research, homework, and leisure
Mariners is so generally appealing more smiling
kids are coming in over after school just because
they want to.
Library children's room.
[Photo courtesy Craig Walker]
of Library Construction staff provides expertise
California State Library’s OLC staff supports
bond act libraries after initial funding.
OLC staff, says Deputy Bond Act Manager
Linda Springer, are specialists whose collective
experience in operations and construction -
reviewing project design drawings, specifications,
and cost estimates - helps libraries like Mariners
“get the most bang for their buck.” Whereas
public library leaders and other team members may
build a library “once in a career,” OLC staff
have shepherded projects “six, eight, or ten
more information on the new Donna and John Crean
Mariners Branch Library, visit the Newport Beach
Public Library’s website
or call (949) 717-3800.
Or visit the Mariners Project
Page on the OLC
more information about the California State
Library’s Office of Library Construction or the
Library Bond Act of 2000 contact Richard B. Hall
at (916) 445-9604 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
listens to speakers opening day of Mariners
State Library's Barbara Silken speaks at Mariners
Library opening April 20th.