Falmouth library fundraising study comes up short

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FALMOUTH — The scale of a proposed expansion of Falmouth Memorial Library might soon be reduced.

According to a recent feasibility study, the library could potentially raise $2.5 million toward expansion, about half of what’s needed for its current $5 million design. An overview of the study was presented to the Town Council on May 28 by library President Mark Porada.

Porada said the next step is to revisit the design to “determine if there are reasonable ways to reduce the potential cost and to address the feedback” from the community that was gleaned during the study, Porada said Tuesday.

Scott Simons Architects of Portland, which developed the original design, will hold a public forum at 6 p.m. June 24 at the library to present a revised version.

“At this point, we are not yet in a position to address the overall funding methods for the project, without the benefit of (the architects’) revised cost estimates and plans,” Porada said.

Porada also plans to present a fundraising plan to the Town Council on July 28.

The feasibility study was conducted by Ovations Fundraising Counsel, a Bangor company. The study, which was completed last month, was designed to determine if the $5 million fundraising goal is feasible, and to identify leaders for the campaign and major donors. Ovations interviewed 42 community members and business leaders.

“Many potential donors were identified, including one leadership level gift,” according to the report. “A few of the study participants said they would be willing to volunteer for a campaign for the Library and several other potential volunteers were identified.”

The study also found that residents believe the library is “a valuable and significant asset for the community,” and its director, staff and volunteers are “highly regarded by the community.”

Ben McCanna can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 125 or bmccanna@theforecaster.net. Follow him on Twitter: @BenMcCanna.