Strategic Planning at NRPL
Frequently Asked Questions
What is a Strategic Plan?The purpose of a strategic plan is to outline the Library’s mission, goals, activities, and intended results, and describe how the Library is meeting the service needs of its community and its participation in meeting statewide library service goals.
Can I Provide Input About the Needs of the Community?YES! Input from library patrons and the broader community is a crucial part of the strategic planning process. The Library is a community resource, supported by your tax dollars and your thoughts and ideas are critical to developing the Plan. Please take the time to share your valuable input.
Take a Brief SurveyLibrary patrons and the broader community will be able to provide input via a brief survey. A link to an online version of the survey will be posted on this website, as well as distributed widely through email, social media, flyers and press and through communications from other New Rochelle community organizations, shortly. In addition, a paper version of the survey will be available at the Library’s main branch, the Huguenot Children’s Library, and other distribution points (TBD) around the city. The survey will be open for six weeks.
I Heard There Was A Community Meeting. What Was Discussed?We had a very positive and lively discussion at the community meeting on July 27. Attendees shared their ideas about programs and services they’d like to see offered and ideas about how the Library spaces can best be used. Participants also learned about the condition of the physical facilities, how building renovations have been financed in the future and various ways future upgrades could be financed. For more information about Library buildings, view below under the “Physical Condition of NRPL Main Branch and Huguenot Children’s Library” tab. To view a recording of the meeting, click here.
How Often Does the New Rochelle Public Library Create a Strategic Plan?
The New York State Education Department requires that all public library systems develop a five-year Plan of Service that serves as the basic agreement between the State and the governing board of the Library, making possible the payment of state aid to the system. Failure to have a strategic plan puts the Library’s eligibility for state grants (such as construction, Arts & Culture, economic development, etc.) at risk.
The strategic planning process is led by the Director and Board of Trustees of the New Rochelle Public Library (NRPL). The most recent NRPL strategic plan covered the period 2015-2020. Due to the pandemic, the planning process for the next plan was delayed. In May of 2021, the Board of Trustees embarked on the process of creating the next five year Plan to be implemented 2021 – 2026.
What is the Process for Creating a Strategic Plan?
The Board of Trustees engaged Public Works Partners, an independent consulting firm, to plan and facilitate the strategic planning process which includes gathering and analyzing input from:
- Library patrons
- Library staff
- The broader New Rochelle community
- Leadership of The New Rochelle Public Library Foundation (NRPLF) and the Friends of the New Rochelle Public Library. These organizations raise funds to support the Library’s robust programming and initiatives such as The Museum Pass Program, computers in the libraries, facility renovations, and more.
- Other stakeholders and community partners
A Physical Conditions Assessment of the Library’s Main Branch and Huguenot Children’s Library (HCL) was undertaken at the end of 2019. The final report, issued at the end of February 2020, found that both buildings are in fair condition with repairs required to abate routine wear and tear and deferred capital improvements.
Haven’t There Been Renovations at the Libraries?
Yes, capital improvements to the physical plant and aesthetics have already been undertaken by the NRPL over the last 10+ years at the Main Branch. Those improvements have included, but are not limited to:
- Renovation of the Children’s Room at the Main Branch
- Renovated Teen Services space at the Main Branch
- Upgrades to the 2nd floor, including new furniture, fixtures and energy efficient lighting, as well as additional laptops in the Handelman Business Opportunity Center and Teen Room.
- Lobby upgrades
- Renovated public restrooms
- Relocated and expanded Friends of the New Rochelle Public Library book store
- new boiler
- A new cooling tower
- New sprinkler-system infrastructure and branch piping in the basement and first floor
- New entrances at Lawton Street and Memorial Highway
- New circulation and registration desk
- New seating for the theater
- Elevator upgrades
What Else Needs to Be Done Regarding the Library Buildings?
Ongoing improvements and routine maintenance to the Library continue on an ongoing basis. However, there are substantial improvements that still need to be made to ensure the facility will be able to meet the needs of its patrons now and in the future. Please see below for the full building assessment.
- Public and staff areas in the Main Branch need to be brought up to current ADA accessibility code
- Additional restroom facilities for the general public need to be added at the Main Branch.
- Main Branch air handlers and electrical systems require replacement, as they are from the original 1979 conversion of the building to the Main Branch, and have reached the end of their service life.
- The sprinkler system infrastructure and branch piping on the second and third floors of the Main Branch need to be replaced.
- The facade of the Main Branch needs to be repaired
- The roofs of the Main Branch and HCL need to be replaced
- Windows at the Main Branch need to be updated
- The patio at HCL needs to be renovated.
- Air circulation at HCL needs to be updated.