Burton Barr Library renovations continue as temporary library gets set to open

PHOENIX - The Burton Barr Library in Phoenix has been closed since this summer after storm damage caused severe flooding in the library.​​

Several employees were fired after the flooding, after allegations they knew repairs needed to be done, or something like this could happen. 

"We had running water in this area, it was like the storm was happening inside the building," said Lee Franklin with Phoenix Public Libraries.

In order to see the sunshine, you must first weather the storm. 

"The entire second floor has received new carpet, a lot of electrical work has been replaced, all the new dry wall is up," said Franklin. 

Burton Barr officials gave us our first inside look Tuesday afternoon at the more than 10 million dollars renovation.

"We want to make sure we do this right and safely," said Franklin. 

Lee Franklin says the months of hard work are beginning to show. 

More than 3 acres of carpet have either been installed or are waiting to be put in place. 

Paint, plumbing, and replacing damaged books will soon follow. 

Crews are tackling the roof and the sprinkler systems that caused the disaster now through next year. 

"That work is happening every single day and it has to be methodical," said Franklin. 

For those anxious for the the library to open, an alternative is on the horizon. 

More than 30,000 books and 28 computers will soon leave Burton Barr, and make their way to their temporary home at Park Central. 

"It's not as big as Burton Barr, but has a huge capacity to be able to bring library services right back into central Phoenix," said Franklin. 

The 30,000 square foot space off Earll Drive and Central Avenue will open next month. 

Supplying much needed resources to a community starving for them. 

"A percentage of our customers have difficulty traveling beyond central Phoenix," said Franklin. 

Making the pop up library, it's 18,000 feet of internet cable, classrooms, and programs essential. 

It's hours will mirror Burton Barr's, until Barr re-opens early next summer.  

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