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January 14, 2009 > Milpitas Public Library opens

Milpitas Public Library opens

By Dustin Findley
Photos By Dustin Findley and Frank De Smidt

The new library grandly opened on Saturday, January 10. Throngs of people gathered for the ribbon cutting ceremony, various events inside, and regular patronage at the library.

City Manager Tom Williams opened the ribbon cutting ceremony. He said one word comes to mind when walking through the library: "wow." "We've successfully integrated the historic Milpitas Grammar School, and its Greek revival architecture, with modern architecture and amenities that anchor both the north and south wing... Any project like this takes vision, and it started with the vision of the city council" said Williams.

Mayor Livengood said this project was 12 years in the making, and that this building and facility started with vision and leadership at many different levels, including city and county.

The many people involved, most elected to office, started process in 1996. Livengood said that as elected officials, "we come and we go. But fortunately buildings like this one stay.

Livengood recognized former mayors Henry Manayan and Jose Esteves and former mayors Denny Weisgerber, and Jim Rogers who were in attendance. He also recognized, from past city councils, Chris Dixon, Jim Lawson, and the late Barbara Lee.

The mayor also personally welcome Mr. Ed Bates, former Milpitas Unified School District superintendent and teacher at Milpitas Grammar School.

Livengood said that when they broke ground on the project he called the historic grammar school building the great dame of Milpitas buildings. It has been around since 1916. It has served its citizens well. It was the first grammar school of Milpitas, a library, senior center and city hall. "It has been the most durable building in our great city" Livengood said.

The library is a monumental achievement, all the more so because it was brought in on time and about $600,000 under budget.

The mayor, the other speakers, the dignitaries, grammar school students, and all those in attendance conveyed the Mayor's sentiment about the "important role libraries play, not only in our great city, but in the United States, an in fact, in the entire world."

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