Jones Library Building Project



Support Our Project

A significant portion of the funding for the Building Project will come from contributions from supporters of the Jones Library via The Campaign for a 21st Century Jones Library, a capital campaign being conducted by the Friends of the Jones Library System, Inc. You can support the Jones Library Building Project by making an online gift designated for the Project, or by printing a contribution form, designating your gift for the Project, and sending your check and the form to the address indicated.

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Thank you for helping us create a Jones Library facility for the 21st Century.



Project Newsletter
Select a volume to view a larger PDF version

See the Town website for a complete archive of newsletters


Community Chat: Jones Library Building Project
With Town Manager Paul Bockelman, Library Director Sharon Sharry, Library Trustee Austin Sarat, and Town Communications Manager Brianna Sunryd  |  Recorded March 25, 2022


From the Director

On behalf of Board of the Trustees of the Jones Library, I want to thank everyone in this community who participated in the planning of this project over the past decade. Whether you were for the project, against the project, or somewhere in between... your thoughtful input helped bring us here today. The project will continue to evolve and improve because of your engagement.

Over the next several months, we will complete the Schematic Designs, and enter into the Design Development phase of the project. Public outreach will resume as we look to design a Library for EVERYONE in our community. Your voice continues to be an important piece of this process.

Special thanks to the following groups of people for their hard work, support, persistence, and passion:

  • Staff of the Jones, North Amherst, and Munson Memorial Libraries
  • Friends of the Jones Library System
  • Friends’ Development Committee
  • Feasibility Committee
  • Sustainability Committee
  • Gardens Advisory Committee
  • Burnett Art Gallery Committee
  • The Literacy Project
  • Capital Campaign Committee
  • Amherst Town Manager & Finance Director
  • Amherst Downtown Business Improvement District
  • Amherst Area Chamber of Commerce
  • Financial Development Agency
  • Finegold Alexander Architects
  • Kuhn Riddle Architects
  • Colliers Project Leaders
  • Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners
  • Amherst Historical Society
  • Amherst Media
  • Amherst Town Council, Finance Committee, JCPC, CPAC, & Historic Commission
  • Congressman James McGovern, Senator Jo Comerford, & Representative Mindy Domb



Our Project at a Glance

Thank you for your interest in our building project. We plan to improve the safety, efficiency, and user-friendliness of the Jones Library, while also restoring our original 1928 building and honoring our past. We recommend the following presentation for those interested in an introduction to our project:

And if you'd like to learn more, we recommend the following resources:



Key Dates



Full Project Timeline




Key Topics & Resources

FISCAL RESPONSIBILITY

Recommended Resources

SOCIAL JUSTICE & ACCESSIBILITY

Recommended Resources

Additional Articles about the Role of Libraries in Social and Economic Justice

SUSTAINABILITY

Recommended Resources

THE NEEDS OF TEENS, CHILDREN, AND FAMILIES

Recommended Resources

HISTORIC PRESERVATION

Recommended Resources



Informational Handouts
Select each one to view a larger PDF version



Recorded Library Chats & Presentations


Library Chat: Staff Talk about the Building Project
October 21, 2021

Building Project Presentation to Town Council
February 22, 2021

The Public Library Construction Grant Program
January 28, 2021

The Library's Role in Economic & Social Justice
January 7, 2021

The Significance of Historic Preservation
December 3, 2020



Project Updates

September 13, 2022: Library Trustees prepared a packet of information (PDF) for the Town Council.

June 10, 2022: Members of our Building Committee toured the new public library buildings in Holyoke, Medford, and Woburn and recorded these video tours.

May 23, 2022: Massachusetts Cultural Facilities Fund (CFF) awards $200,000 to the Jones Library Capital Campaign; read the press release (PDF).

January 24, 2022: The Town's Historical Commission has created a webpage with information about the Jones Library Historic Structure Report.

August 4, 2021: The Town Manager has issued a memo announcing his appointments to the Jones Library Building Committee (PDF).

July 12, 2021: The Town Manager is seeking members to serve on the Jones Library Building Committee (JLBC), which will oversee the design and construction of the Jones Library Restoration and Expansion.

April 5, 2021: The Amherst Town Council decisively approved the Library’s renovation/expansion plan by appropriating the Town’s $15.8 million share of the cost. The Council also authorized the Town to enter into an agreement with the Library’s Trustees to supply the remaining $6.6 million of the total cost of the project.

March 29, 2021: The Amherst Area Chamber of Commerce sent us this statement of support for our project. Many thanks to the Chamber staff and Board of Directors!

February 22, 2021: View the Library Trustees' video presentation to the Town Council (~65 mins) about the building project. (This video was created by the Jones Library's IT Specialist Hank Allan.)

January 27, 2021: Read Sustaining the Future by Revisiting our Historic Properties (PDF), an article by Finegold Alexander Architects about the Jones Library building project which will appear in February 2021 edition of High Profile.

December 12, 2020: Read Amherst Can't Afford to Reject the Jones Library Renovation/Expansion Project by Lee Edwards, Trustee and Co-Chair of the Development Committee for the Friends of the Jones Library, and Kent W. Faerber, Co-Chair of the Development Committee for the Friends of the Jones Library.

November 26, 2020: Read Urging Amherst Town Council to vote for Jones Library renovation (Daily Hampshire Gazette) by Nancy Campbell and Marian Walker, Co-Presidents, Friends of the Jones Libraries.

October 22, 2020: Read a Memo to the Community Preservation Act Committee regarding our Revised CPA Grant Application (October 22, 2020).

October 19, 2020: Read Why It Is Important to Move Forward with the Plan to Renovate and Expand the Jones Library by Trustee President Austin Sarat & Director Sharon Sharry.

September 10, 2020: See the updated presentation entitled Schematic/Sustainability Study (September 8, 2020) (PDF) prepared by Finegold Alexander Architects. UPDATE: See the revised presentation (October 8, 2020).

September 1, 2020: Read our Revised Community Preservation Act (CPA) Grant Application Packet (August 25, 2020) (PDF).

August 25, 2020: Read the Revised Jones Library Sustainability Goals Schematic Design Package (PDF) prepared by Finegold Alexander Architects.

July 2, 2020: Today's Joint Jones Library Feasibility & Design (agenda & packet) / Sustainability Committee Meeting (agenda & packet) included a discussion of the sustainability and accessibility reports linked below. UPDATE (July 24, 2020): View a video recording of the meeting.

July 1, 2020: Read the Jones Library Sustainability Goals Schematic Design Package (PDF) prepared by Finegold Alexander Architects. NOTE: This document has been updated; see the revised package above (August 25).

June 10, 2020: Read the Jones Library Accessibility Review and Recommendations (PDF) prepared by Kuhn Riddle Architects.

May 8, 2020: Listen to Designing for Sustainability: An Interview with Finegold Alexander Architects, the first podcast in a series called "Building Literacy: Public Library Construction" from the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners.

February 27, 2020: See the full presentation by Finegold Alexander Architects of their Revised Schematic Concept (February 26, 2020) (PDF). Or the abridged version (PDF).

February 11, 2020: Read our Proposal for an Accessibility Study and Review of Required Building Improvements (February 5, 2020) (PDF).

January 23, 2020: Read our Community Preservation Act (CPA) Grant Application Packet (January 23, 2020) (PDF).

January 22, 2020: Here are 2 new documents: Town of Amherst Capital Investment Projects - December 2019 Listening Sessions Report (January 21, 2020) (PDF), Sustainability Memo from Finegold Alexander Architects - with Sustainability Committee Comments (January 8, 2020) (PDF).

December 2, 2019: The Town posted a video overview of the four proposed capital investment projects. Watch the video (22:48) from the beginning or go directly to the portion of the video about the library project (starting at 5:19).

November 4, 2019: The Town Council will hold four Listening Sessions to collect comments from the public on the need for four major capital investments facing the Town and to provide guidance to the Town Council in setting priorities. Members of the School Committee and Jones Library Trustees have assisted in development of the information for these sessions and will be present at each session. The Listening Sessions will be held on the following dates and times:

  • Tuesday, Dec 3rd at 3:30 p.m. at Bangs Center, Large Activity Room
  • Tuesday, Dec 3rd at 7:00 p.m. at Bangs Center, Large Activity Room
  • Monday, Dec 9th at 3:30 p.m. at Fort River Elementary School, Library
  • Monday, Dec 9th at 6:00 p.m. at Wildwood Elementary School, Library

July 2019: The Jones Library moved up to 2nd on the wait list for a construction grant.

February 27, 2018: See the Construction Fact Sheet (PDF) for our project from the Masschusetts Board of Library Commissioners.

February 26, 2018: See the General Conditions of the Interior of the Jones Library (PDF).

July 31, 2017: The Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners recently posted a resource guide entitled Libraries on the Waiting List for a Construction Grant: What now?

July 13, 2017: Today, we learned that 9 libraries were awarded a construction grant from the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners for FY2018, and 24 libraries were placed on the wait list. The Jones Library is 9th on the wait list. (See the MBLC’s Press Release for more information.) This is excellent news for Amherst as it will give us plenty of time to work with the community to determine its design priorities. We look forward to the next stage of this process. Please stay tuned for further details.

May 1, 2017: See our Deferred Maintenance Estimate (PDF).

April 28, 2017 (Updated): Many thanks to the Amherst Historical Society (PDF letter), the Friends of the Library (PDF letter), the Burnett Gallery Committee (PDF letter), the Literacy Project (PDF letter), Amherst's institutional librarians (Amherst College, Hampshire College, and UMass Amherst; PDF letter), Amherst's public school librarians (PDF letter), and our ESL students (PDF letter) for their support of our project.

February 15, 2017 (Updated): See our updated Space Needs Table (PDF), Key Milestones (PDF), our application designs and renderings (below), and our mailing to Town Meeting – Narrative (PDF), Floor Plans (PDF).

January 26, 2017: We have submitted our 2016-2017 Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners (MBLC) Construction Grant Round Application (PDF)!



Designs & Documents

Design Process & Building Program

  1. Schematic Designs - Finegold Alexander (July 1, 2022) (PDF)
  2. Revised Schematic Designs and Exterior Materials Presentation - Finegold Alexander (June 24, 2022) (PDF)
  3. Building Committee Presentation - Updated Schematic Designs and Inclusive Restroom Designs (June 2022) (PDF)
  4. Exterior Materials Rendered Options - Finegold Alexander (June 7, 2022) (PDF)
  5. Exterior Materials Presentation - Finegold Alexander (June 2, 2022) (PDF)
  6. Revised Schematic Designs (May 27, 2022) (PDF)
  7. Jones Library & Kestrel Land Trust Proposal - Presentation to Amherst Historical Commission (May 18, 2022) (PDF)
  8. Jones Library & Kestrel Land Trust Proposal (April 20, 2022) (PDF)
  9. Building Project Schedule from Colliers International (May 9, 2022) (PDF)
  10. Jones Library Preservation Restriction Agreement - Acceptance Letter from the Massachusetts Historical Commission (April 29, 2022) (PDF)
  11. Jones Library Preservation Restriction Agreement - Signed (March 16, 2022) (PDF)
  12. Jones Library Preservation Restriction Agreement (February 16, 2022) (PDF)
  13. Jones Library Historic Structure Report (PDF)
  14. Jones Library Historic Structure Report Presentation to Historical Commission and Library Trustees (PDF) (January 12, 2022)
  15. Finegold Alexander Article - Sustaining the Future by Revisiting our Historic Properties (PDF)
  16. Schematic/Sustainability Study - Updated Presentation by Finegold Alexander Architects (October 8, 2020) (PDF)
  17. Schematic/Sustainability Study - Updated Presentation by Finegold Alexander Architects (September 8, 2020) (PDF)
  18. Jones Library Sustainability Goals Schematic Design Package - Revised (Aug 30, 2020) (PDF)
  19. Sustainability Committee Recommendations (August 26, 2020) (PDF)
  20. Jones Library Accessibility Review and Recommendations (June 10, 2020) (PDF)
  21. Finegold Alexander - Abridged Presentation - Revised Schematic Concept (February 26, 2020) (PDF)
  22. Finegold Alexander - Full Presentation - Revised Schematic Concept (February 26, 2020) (PDF)
  23. Proposal for an Accessibility Study and Review of Required Building Improvements (February 5, 2020) (PDF)
  24. Sustainability Memo from Finegold Alexander Architects - with Sustainability Committee Comments (January 8, 2020) (PDF)
  25. Jones Library FY2017 - FY2021 Plan for Library Service (October 6, 2016) (PDF)
  26. FY2018 Action Plan (PDF)
  27. Hazardous Materials Inspection Report (September 29, 2016) (PDF)
  28. Existing Conditions Report and Concept Design Structural Narrative (August 23, 2016) (PDF)
  29. DRAFT Building Project Budget Summary (August 15, 2016) (PDF)
  30. DRAFT Building Project Budget (August 15, 2016) (PDF)
  31. Presentation by Finegold Alexander Architects (October 26, 2016) (PDF)
  32. Presentation by Finegold Alexander Architects (August 11, 2016) (PDF)
  33. Presentation by Finegold Alexander Architects (July 27, 2016) (PDF)
  34. Presentation by Finegold Alexander Architects (July 19, 2016) (PDF)
  35. Presentation by Finegold Alexander Architects (May 10, 2016) (PDF)
  36. Jones Library Building Draft Designs (July 8, 2016) (PDF)
  37. Jones Library Building Program - Space Needs Table (Revised November 2, 2018) (PDF)
  38. Jones Library Building Program - Space Needs Table (Revised December 2016) (PDF)
  39. Jones Library Building Program - Space Needs Table (Revised August 11, 2016) (PDF)
  40. Jones Library Building Program - Space Needs Table (Revised July 12, 2016) (PDF)
  41. Jones Library Building Program - Space Needs Table (Revised April 13, 2016) (PDF)
  42. Jones Library Building Program (July 2, 2015) (PDF)
  43. Service Population Calculation (PDF)
  44. Square Footage Changes (May 12, 2016) (PDF)
  45. Project Timeline (April 7, 2016) (PDF)
  46. Building Program Acceptance Letter (July 17, 2015) (PDF)
  47. Long Range Plan for the Amherst Town Libraries: FY2017 - FY2021 (June 4, 2015) (PDF)

Massachusetts Public Library Construction Program

  1. Construction Fact Sheet - Jones Library Project - Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners (PDF)
  2. General Conditions of the Interior of the Jones Library (February 13, 2018) (PDF)
  3. Grant Review Team - Review Worksheet
  4. Grant Review Team - Tally Sheet
  5. Grant Certification Letter to MBLC (May 24, 2017) (PDF)
  6. Deferred Maintenance Estimate - Jones Library Building (May 1, 2017) (PDF)
  7. Town Meeting Mailing - Narrative (March 27, 2017) (PDF)
  8. Town Meeting Mailing - Floor Plans (March 27, 2017) (PDF)
  9. Key Milestones for our Building Project (February 15, 2017) (PDF)
  10. Jones Library 2016-2017 MBLC Construction Grant Round Application (January 26, 2017) (PDF)
  11. Color Version of Designs Included in our Grant Application (January 26, 2017) (PDF)
  12. Jones Library Building Program - Space Needs Table (Revised December 2016) (PDF)
  13. Statement of Support from Amherst's Institutional Librarians (March 13, 2017) (PDF)
  14. Statement of Support from the Literacy Project (February 24, 2017) (PDF)
  15. Statement of Support from the Amherst Historical Society (February 6, 2017) (PDF)
  16. Statement of Support from the Burnett Gallery Committee (January 3, 2017) (PDF)
  17. Statement of Support from the Friends of the Library (December 5, 2016) (PDF)
  18. Massachusetts Historical Commission Project Notification Form & Quad Map (October 31, 2016) (PDF)
  19. LEED Project Checklist (October 28, 2016) (PDF)
  20. Jones Library Letter of Intent (October 6, 2016) (PDF)
  21. Statement of Support from Jones Library ESL Students (April 28, 2017) (PDF)
  22. Statement of Support from Amherst's Public School Librarians (March 20, 2017) (PDF)



Additional Information

For more information about our project, including additional video recordings of "Library Chats" and presentations, see our additional information page.