Board of Directors Meeting Minutes, April 17, 2012


Tuesday, April 17, 2012, 8:30 a.m.

Harold Washington Library Center
Multi-Purpose Room, Lower Level
400 South State Street
  1. Approval of the minutes of the regular meeting on March 27, 2012 (action required)
  2. Commissioner’s report
  3. Report of the Committee on Administration and Finance
  4. Report of the Committee on Facilities
  5. Chicago Public Library Foundation, Rhona S. Frazin, CEO
  6. Other Business
  7. Questions and comments from the audience

Next Board Meeting

Tuesday, May 15, 2012, 8:30 a.m.

Harold Washington Library Center
400 S. State Street

The regular meeting of the Board of Directors of the Chicago Public Library was convened by Board President Linda Johnson Rice at 8:31 a.m. on Tuesday, April, 2012 in the Harold Washington Library Center’s Multi-Purpose Room.

Board Members in Attendance

  • Linda Johnson Rice, President
  • Cherryl T. Thomas, Vice President
  • Christopher P. Valenti, Secretary
  • Cristina Benitez
  • Josephine Gómez
  • Lynn Lockwood
  • Julia Zhu


  • Susan S. Hassan
  • Israel Idonije

Also in attendance were Commissioner Brian Bannon, Assistant Commissioners Greta Bever, Laura Zupko and Andrea Telli and other members of the Library staff.


  • The Chicago Public Library Foundation, Rhona S. Frazin, President & CEO

Members of the Public

  • David Dalka, patron
  • Rev. Doyle Landry

Approval of the Minutes

A motion was made, seconded and passed to approve the minutes of the Library Board’s regular meeting on March 27, 2012.

Commissioner's Report

Commissioner Brian Bannon reported that the Library is looking at possibly providing full production software on its public computers. The Library’s computers currently have open and free access to the Internet, but not Excel©, Microsoft Word © or any of the standard application software. Cost would not be an issue, as the Library is considering using Open Office, a free, open source version of software, which many of the Library’s peers are currently using. Patrons have expressed that this service would be of an immense value to them particularly for school work and resume writing. The Library will be looking at its possible impact and report back to the Board for approval.

Commissioner Bannon also reported that the Library is considering allowing the public access to computers even if they have fines on their account. This would require changing the Library’s policy on computer use. Currently, patrons are not allowed to check out materials or use the public computers if they have fines of a $1.00 or more on their account. Commissioner Bannon stated that some members of the public and staff believe that it is punitive since using library computers isn’t about taking materials out and being trusted to return when you have a fine. It is more about having access. Patrons are not prevented from attending programs at the libraries when they have fines. Commissioner Bannon cited this as a challenge for children who may have lost a book and not allowed access to a computer. The Library’s desire is to explore the financial implications of this action and report back to the Board for consideration.

Commissioner Bannon reported that he is in the first phase of internal planning for the Chicago Public Library. The first few weeks have been spent seeing, experiencing and understanding the organization and with the expectation of moving into a planning phase in months two and three which will result in three or four programmatic initiatives or priorities. Boston Consulting Group, the consulting firm that provided pro bono assistance to the Library on its last strategic plan, has offered to extend pro bono assistance on this initiative.

Commissioner Bannon reported that the Library began a new design process for the Albany Park branch last week. The Library is looking at keeping the concept of the prototype’s exterior shell, but change the programmatic functions of the interior. Based on what the Library has learned from its work in YOUmedia and understanding YOUmedia and learning, some of the areas that the Library would like to expand are learning technology for adults and children and creating zones and spaces to serve all the programmatic needs of the neighborhood including spaces for teens. The Library will be assembling a team to review possible design changes. Commissioner Bannon expressed his desire to slow down the design timeline for this branch, which is expected to be minimally impacted. The Library will keep the Board apprised of any significant impact to the timeline of this project.

Administration and Finance Committee Report

Director Cherryl Thomas gave the report for the Administration and Finance Committee. The Committee met on Tuesday, April 10 and approved the minutes of the Committee’s meeting on March 20, 2012. There was no Schedule of Contracts and Requisitions for the month of April 2012.

Director Thomas reported that the Library, after discussions with the Mayor’s Office, the Office of Budget and Management, and 2FM, has decided to change its course on how it will expend the $10 million State capital grant funds. Originally, the Library had talked about using some of the money to build a new Back of the Yards Branch, fund about $2 million in deferred maintenance issues at the Woodson Regional Library, and expand the YOUMedia space in the Harold Washington Library Center. There is concern that the City cannot come up with the -two-thirds match to fund new construction at this time. However, 2FM has significant resources that it is willing to leverage as the two-thirds match. The Library is considering using about $2 million from 2FM to “green” some of the Library’s older buildings to improve their mechanical, electrical, and operational systems and install new windows to make them more energy efficient as part of 2FM’s “Light and Bright” initiative. The Library is also considering possibly using some of the funds to paint and re-carpet some locations. The two-thirds match appears to be in place.

Director Thomas stated that she asked if the Library may use some of the money to tap into green initiatives and retrofit some of the Library’s existing buildings. Commissioner Bannon responded in the affirmative.

Director Thomas reported that Reverend Doyle Landry, a member of the audience, asked the Committee to consider a pilot program of college guidance counselors posted at the Woodson and Sulzer Regional libraries from 5:00 – 9:00 p.m. to assist students who need assistance in applying for college financial assistance.

Facilities Committee

Director Josephine Gómez gave the report of the Facilities Committee. The Committee met at the Roden Branch Library, which is located at 6083 N. Northwest Highway. Members of the staff present included Commissioner Bannon, First Deputy Commissioner Karen Danczak Lyons, Morton Coburn, North District Chief Paula Saitis, Roden Branch Manager Bruce Fox and Nereida Hague. In addition to Library staff, the following were present: Theresa Mah, a Chinatown resident and a member of the Coalition for a Better Chinese American Community, Lisa Ryan, Chief of Staff to 41st Ward Alderman Mary O’Connor and Michael Ulreich, a Norwood Park community resident.

Director Gómez reported that due to the lack of a quorum the minutes of the Facilities Committee meeting of March 23 were not approved.

Director Gómez motioned that the Board approve the minutes of the Facilities Committee’s March 21, 2012 meeting. The motion was seconded and passed.

Director Gómez reported that Mort Coburn presented and highlighted the following from the Capital Improvement Projects (Attachment A) report:

  • Little Village: This 16,295 square foot branch located at 2343 S. Kedzie Avenue opened for public service on Monday, October 3. Operating manuals and “As Built” architectural drawings are expected to be ready for delivery mid-April. Fifteen punch list items on the building’s exterior cannot be completed until the spring. The Public Building Commission is aiming for a gold LEED certification.
  • Projects in the Pre-construction phase:
  • Humboldt Park library: 5,000 square foot expansion with TIF funds. The Public Building Commission has awarded the construction contract to Tyler Lane Construction. The branch will include a YOUmedia site for middle and high school students. Alderman Maldonado and local community groups have been briefed on the plans. The branch closed to public service on March 24 to allow the general contractor to begin renovations in the existing building on April 19. The Library anticipates this project to be completed by October 2012. There will be no LEED certification for this building.
  • Edgewater: Construction continues on this Lohan Anderson 2-story design. Burling Builders, Inc. is the contractor of this project. This project is expected to be completed in the spring of 2013.
  • Projects in the planning phase:
  • Whitney Young (no change): New 16,295 square foot, single level structure to replace the current facility. The pilot test of the solution to break down the contaminated chemicals left by the former cleaning establishment was conducted. The sample soils were analyzed by a private laboratory with positive results for the 12 feet of sandy soil, and with a less positive result for the site’s clay soil. The Public Building Commission is in discussions with the environmental consultant to determine next steps. Remediation after final tests will take 18-24 months.
  • Daley, Richard J.: No change in status to report on this new 16,295 square foot replacement for the current Richard J. Daley Branch.
  • Albany Park: TIF funds will be used for the construction of this 16,295 one-story (same as Dunning) square foot branch library. Jackson Harlan is the Architect of Record for this project, which is anticipated to be completed by the fall of 2014. The Public Building is still in the land acquisition phase for this project, which involves the relocation of residents. Lohan Anderson prepared a concept floor plan originally used for the new Richard J. Daley Branch. The Library and the City’s 2FM department reviewed the layout. Library Commissioner Brian Bannon will have an opportunity to work with the AOR on further changes.
  • Independence Branch: No changes to report on this project.
  • Chinatown Branch: No changes to report on this project.
  • Woodson Regional Library: The building’s west façade has been stabilized by caulking and the attachment of a metal net to contain loose material and a sidewalk canopy has been erected. A permanent repair must be funded and completed within one year. An Illinois State Library Capital Grant is a possible source of funding for the needed repairs.

Foundation Report

Rhona S. Frazin, President and CEO of the Chicago Public Library Foundation, gave the Foundation’s report. (Attachment B).

Other Business

Commissioner Bannon reported that the following staff has elected to retire from the Chicago Public Library: Mary O’Donnell (43 years), Martha Mar (42 years),  Tim Hickey (33 years), Stella Beck (32 years), Portia Love (31 years),  Karen Danczak Lyons (30 years), William Vaccaro (30 years),  Tomas Vargas (29 years) Linda Cwiklik (26 years), Suzanne Strom (15 years),  Classie Ray (15 years), Mary Collier (14 years), Richard Taylor (9 years).

Commissioner Bannon noted Ms. Danczak Lyons’ extraordinary contributions to the Chicago Public Library System and the City of Chicago during her 30 years of public service.

President Rice presented Ms. Lyons with a gold library card, which distinguishes her as a retired employee of the Chicago Public Library System and read her resolution (Attachment C).

Questions and Comments from the Audience

Reverend Doyle Landry addressed the Board. Reverend Landry. Reverend Landry requested that the Library consider establishing a lecture to be held in October in the late Maggie Daley’s name.

As there was no further business, the meeting adjourned at 9:49 a.m.

Submitted by Christopher P. Valenti,  Secretary

Attachment A: Report on CPL Capital Projects for April 2012

Prepared for the Facilities Committee

April 17, 2012
Chicago Public Library Board of Directors Meeting


Number of buildings at a construction stage: 2

  • Humboldt Park Branch Expansion
  • Edgewater Branch

Newly Completed Buildings

Little Village Branch Library: 2311 South Kedzie Avenue

The 16,295 sq. ft. library is a replacement of the Marshall Square storefront facility. The library’s AOR is Harley Ellis Deveraux.

The contractor is the George Sollitt Company with a joint venture partner, Oakley Construction. The project is funded through general obligation bonds.

Operating and maintenance manuals and “As Built” architectural drawings are to be ready for delivery by mid-April.

Fifteen punch listed items remain to be attended to on the building’s exterior - mostly ground covering items that require an outside temperature of 50 plus degrees. A few items relate to masonry work.

The contractor is still compiling the needed papers for an application to the U.S. Green Building Council. A LEED Gold Certificate is anticipated.

Projects in their Construction Phase

Humboldt Park Branch Library Remodeling and Expansion: 1605 North Troy Street

The expansion of the existing branch will be financed through TIF funds. The AOR is the firm of Steven Rankin Associates, the AOR for the Toman Branch Library. The addition will include a YOUmedia space for middle and high school students.

The contractor: Tylor Lane Construction Ltd.

Construction cost: $ 2,283,650.00

Public services were concluded on Saturday, March 23rd. Staff is now packing the library’s book collection for storage in the building’s multipurpose room.

The contractor is to take over the existing building on April 19th to begin a schedule of renovations:

  • Repaint all public areas
  • Replace the existing carpet with new rubber flooring
  • Replace an existing condensing unit
  • Convert existing public lavatories to ADA compliant facilities
  • Remove unsightly metal window screens
  • Improve existing exterior building signage
  • Prepare to integrate automated systems between the existing and the new building addition.
  • Existing sewer lines will also be examined for deficiencies.

Re: the foundation of the addition: The building’s base perimeter and a three foot cement wall have been completed. The anticipated date for substantial completion of the construction is October 25, 2012.

There will be no LEED certification for this project.

Edgewater Branch Library: 6414-16 North Broadway and 1210 West Elmdale Avenue

Architect of Record: Lohan Anderson

General Contractor: Burling Builders Construction

Construction cost: $7,614,000

The new two storied branch library of 16,533 sq ft in area is replacing an 11,000 sq. ft. building constructed in 1973.

Prime floor activities

  • Ground floor
  • Book check in & check out center
  • Pre-school reading area
  • Young adult reading area
  • Staff work room
  • Public lavatories & utility rooms
  • Second floor
  • Adult reading room
  • Multipurpose & smaller study rooms
  • Staff lunch room

Stations for library computers and patron laptop sites are on both floors.

The firm of K & S Engineers, employed by the GC, came on the site on March 27th to begin their installation of 34 caissons to support the library structure. Construction meetings are held weekly at a store rented by the GC.

Substantial completion of the branch building is anticipated by March 22, 2013.

Projects in their Planning Phase

Whitney Young Branch Library: 7901 South King Drive (no change)

The current 11,000 sq. ft. building, constructed in 1972, is to be replaced by a 16,295 sq. ft. prototype building. Three adjacent lots have been acquired for the new facility.

Current site experiments are being conducted by the PBC through Mr. Rich Schleyer, project manager for the environmental remediation phase at the library site. Concisely: a chemical solution has been injected at a number of borings to determine how well the said solution can neutralize the contaminating chemicals left by the previous resident cleaning establishment.

Samples have been analyzed by a private laboratory with positive results for the first 12 feet of sandy soil, and with a less positive result for the site’s clay soil. The PBC is in discussions with the environmental contractor as to what the next step should be. It will take 18 to 24 months for the contaminated site to be ready for a library construction.

Daley Branch Library: 3400 South Halsted Street (no change)

The existing facility is to be replaced by a new prototype building of 16,295 sq. ft. There is no identified funding for this project – as reported by the PBC.

Albany Park: 5150 North Kimball Avenue

This project is to be supported through TIF financing. $150,000 was approved by City Council on November 2, 2011.

The architect of record (AOR) is Jackson /Harlen Architects.

The AOR’s last assignment was the Dunning Branch Library which opened for service in May 2011.

The new library will remain on its current site at Foster & Kimball Avenues with additional lots to the west providing adequate land for the larger library.

Lohan Anderson prepared the concept floor plan originally prepared for a new Richard J. Daley Branch building. The layout has been reviewed by the CPL and 2FM. Commissioner Bannon will have an opportunity to work with the AOR on further changes.

The PBC is currently projecting acquisition, title and possession of the added property at 3411-15 W. Foster to be complete by July 31, 2012.

Bid and award phase: April 2013 - May 2014

Construction phase: April 2013 – May 2014

Facility opening: Estimated as August 2014

Independence Branch Library: 3548 W. Irving Park Rd (no change)

No funding is in place for construction. The CPL is evaluating funding options and land in consultation with Alderman Mell, the PBC and the community.

Chinatown Branch Library: 2353 S. Wentworth Avenue (no change)

The PBC is evaluating available funding and land in consultation with Alderman Solis, Representative Dunkin, the CDC, the PBC and the community. The Community Development Committee has sought acquisition authority for property on the Southwest corner of Archer and Wentworth as the location for a future building.

Woodson Regional Library Façade: 9525 S. Halsted St. (no change)

The content of the Rubinois & Mesia Report has been discussed by the Facilities Committee in past months. As a result of the latter and representations made by senior staff from 2FM (Fleet & Facilities Management, formerly DGS) the following is the status of the Woodson façade problem:

  • The building’s west façade has been stabilized by caulking where needed and the attachment of a metal net to retain any loose material.
  • A sidewalk canopy is now in place for the entire length of the building’s front façade.
  • A permanent repair must be funded and accomplished within one year.
  • An Illinois State Construction Grant is a possible source of funding for the needed repairs.

Report Prepared on April 3, 2012 by Morton Coburn, Director, Library Bldg. Programs

Attachment B: Chicago Public Library Foundation Report

April 17, 2012
Chicago Public Library Board of Directors Meeting

The Chicago Public Library Foundation is pleased to share with the Library Board this report on new funds received for Library initiatives since your March 27 meeting.

Under the Leadership of Sandburg Dinner Co-Chairs Trisha Rooney Alden, CEO of R4 Services and Michael Sacks, Chairman and CEO of Grovesnor Capital Management, we have already secured more than $400,000 in early support for this year’s dinner which will honor Don DeLillo with the Sandburg Award for Fiction and Walter Isaacson with the Sandburg Award for Non-Fiction. With this success we are confident of once again breaking the million dollar mark for this dinner, which will be held on October 17 at the Forum at UIC.

We are also pleased to announce additional support for the Summer Reading Program of $50,000 from Macy’s and $10,000 from the Citadel Foundation. A significant number of requests are still pending and we hope to announce that we are close to achieving our goal of $560,000 by the time of your next meeting. In addition, we have worked with the Library staff to shape a new strategic partnership with WTTW and WFMT. We will be joining together in a mutually beneficial arrangement to promote the respective programs of the Library and public broadcast. Our first joint initiative will be around the Summer Reading Program, when WTTW will produce and air free public service announcements to run during children’s programming hours of 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. They will also be providing PBS costumed characters such as Arthur, to appear at the Readers Night Celebration in August and are giving the Library the opportunity for library card sign-up at their back to school fun-run in Lincoln Park.

The Richard H. Driehaus Foundation has informed us that they will continue to support archiving of the important Vivian Harsh Collection of African American History and Literature at the Woodson Regional Library with a new grant of $20,000 .

Foundation staff and board have been spending a considerable amount of time with Commissioner Bannon, introducing him to leadership of the philanthropic, business and civic communities. On April 5, our Chair Bob Wislow, Past Chair Jim Donnelley and Library Board

Chair Linda Johnson Rice hosted an event for 200 leaders and donors at which Mayor Emanuel introduced the Commissioner to the community.

Commissioner Bannon has joined me for a number of meetings with key donors and opinion leaders, and I am pleased to support that they have all been greatly impressed by his communications skills, energy and vision. To this end, we are also very grateful to the Boston Consulting Group, which has committed to a significant amount of pro bono consulting time to over the next three months to assist the Commissioner and this Board in the articulation of their vision and priorities of the Library.