Santa Clara Libraries Rewire for Online Era

The rise of the Internet and digital media have forced the library system to rethink its role in the community, Ms. Howe says. People don’t need to come to the library to check out ebooks, for instance. And digital materials don’t take any room to store. That raises some interesting questions for librarians. “Do the libraries that we are building now need as much shelf space?” asks Ms. Howe.

At the county’s Gilroy branch, which opened in April, the answer was yes. Still, it doesn’t resemble a library from days gone by. Instead of tall stacks of books, the library features lots of places to sit and mingle. There are rooms that community groups can book for functions, a story room, even a vending machine. Visitors are encouraged to talk—not just whisper—and to eat and drink.

Source: “Santa Clara Libraries Rewire for Online Era,” Wall Street Journal, August 22, 2012. (To view the full article, copy and paste the article’s title in Google’s search field. The results will provide you a link to view the entire article.)

Thank you and the City of El Cerrito Strategic Plan

We want to thank everyone who attended our two community meetings this month! We heard a lot of great ideas, got helpful feedback, and were pleased to meet so many new library supporters. Now, we have an important request for you: please participate in the City of El Cerrito’s Strategic Plan!

The City is developing a new Strategic Plan to shape its priorities over the coming years. The City Council and staff will use the Strategic Plan to determine projects and programs that the community most wants. If you want to see El Cerrito get a new library, please make that comment heard during this process!

There are a couple of different ways to participate in the Strategic Plan. On Wednesday, August 29, at 4 PM and at 6 PM, there will be a “Community Open House at City Hall”. The Open House will offer the public information on services and programs provided by each City department, present challenges and opportunities, and provide a venue for sharing ideas regarding our city’s vision for the future. There will be two Open House sessions: 4:00pm to 6:00pm and repeated 6:00 pm to 8:00pm. To attend the Open House at City Hall, you must RSVP to If you can’t make it in person, you can find the link to email your comment online at

Finally, we’d also like to thank the Friends of the El Cerrito Library for their support of a new library. Stay tuned for more activities this fall!

REMINDER: Community Meeting this Saturday at 5:30PM

On Saturday, August 18th at 5:30PM the campaign committee will have its second community meeting at a time when it is more convenient for many residents. The meeting format is similiar to the first one  – see Patch’s article – and residents would have an opportunity to voice ideas and concerns. We expect the meeting to last 1.5 hours. Representatives from the city and the County Library will be present. We hope to see you there and bring your neighbors! To receive future announcements from us, please sign up for our mailing list at