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Oldsmar library to feature Old Florida look

The City Council has approved the final design for Oldsmar's $3-million library, giving City Manager Bruce Haddock the go-ahead Tuesday night to advertise for bids.

The 25,000-square-foot building will be more than three times the size of the existing library, on State Street. The new facility will be on the southeast corner of St. Petersburg Drive and Dartmouth Avenue.

It will include space for a cafe or coffee shop and will have a screened-in outdoor reading room, said project architect Phil Trezza, with St. Petersburg's Harvard Jolly Inc. The building also will have a large meeting room for community use after library hours.

Trezza provided this timetable: The drawings are likely to be finished within the next month, construction should begin in three months and the library should be completed about one year later.

Trezza said his firm researched examples of Florida vernacular architecture, Mediterranean Revival styles, the existing library building and the original hotel proposed for Oldsmar in the 1920s.

To maintain that look, materials will include cast stone, stucco and clay barrel-tile roofing, Trezza said. Everything from the diffused lighting to paddle-style fans is designed to create an Old Florida ambience that city officials requested, the architect said.

The children's area will have its own storytime room, said library director Bert Weber, and the teen room will be in one of the two circular tower rooms.

"I would like to have very comfortable chairs, like theatre seating," Weber said of the teen room.

But what she's most excited about is the second circular room, the garden room: It will be an outdoor reading room for adults, enclosed in screens with overhead fans.

"It's going to be something none of the other libraries will have," Weber said.

The library also will have 105 parking spaces on the 3.68-acre lot, which used to be home to the Civic Club. The city obtained that land last April, after settling an eminent domain lawsuit it filed against the club.