In January 2014, we began a new modernization plan for the New Milford Public Library, when the Town Council approved spending $20,000 from the Waste Management Fund for a feasibility study.  A planning committee of 9 community volunteers was appointed in August 2015, and began twice monthly meetings to discuss ideas and suggestions. Here we will chronicle our progress as we continue this exciting project!

Our timeline:

    • August-November 2015 – architectural firms were researched.
    • November 2015 – we conducted a survey to collect information from the public as to what was important and necessary for the library services and facility.
    • November 2015-April 2016 – 4 architectural firms presented their ideas.
    • May 2016 – we hired Lothrop Associates to devise a proposal for the feasibility study.
    • November 2016 – the architect presented his proposal before Town Council.
    • November 2016 – the Town Council unanimously approved the appropriation of $162,700 for the next design phase which will be schematic design plans from the architect that will be specific to our community needs
    • February 2017 – ‎Focus Groups will meet to discuss community wants and needs
    • February 2017 – results of our community survey, staff input, discussions with the Modernization Committee and four focus groups have been submitted to the architect for them to produce schematic designs
    • June 12, 2017 – architects will present to the Town Council at 7:00 PM the revised plans to increase Children’s and Teen space as well as create more study rooms and make the front entrance ADA compliant, among other improvements – WE NEED YOUR SUPPORT AT THIS MEETING!
    • June 12, 2017 – thanks to the hard work of the Modernization Committee, Lothrop Associates, the Library Board of Trustees, NMPL staff, Mayor Gronbach, the Town Council and YOU, the next phase of architectural plans for the improved library was approved on June 12th!!  This next phase is called design development and specifies exactly where the plumbing, electric, etc. goes. Please come in and take a look at the story boards (located along the ramp way leading to the lower level of the Main library) which show the actual layout of the new library. More and better room for children and teens, more study areas, and a lovely reading room for adults!
    • Plans continue to develop for a modern library, with small changes to the interior design and initial possibilities for flooring and wall coverings. We are in the process of completing the design development phase of planning, with the final architectural phase of creating construction documents up next.  We will be presenting the design development plans to the Town Council on Monday, October 23rd, and then asking for the funding for the construction documents.  We need you to be there to show your support, but we also want your input.  This modernization benefits everyone, so everyone should have a say!
    • October 23, 2017 – The Town Council voted unanimously to move forward with our plans for Modernization. Construction documents, here we come!!!”  The next phase is the creation of the ‘Construction Documents’ which are the actual blueprints. This is the last step of planning needed before actually beginning. The architects and the Modernization Committee have worked so hard to produce a plan that retains the original footprint and is thus a very financially conservative plan, but still manages to provide the desperately needed room for children, young adults, and more study space.  If you haven’t taken a look at the story boards of the proposed plans in the library, please come in and take a look! If you have any questions, I’d be happy to answer them – just shoot me an email at
    • Wow, so much has happened in the past few months!  In August after much discussion with the architects, and the Town, about the design plans that provide for a modernized building that stays on our footprint, provides what the town needs in terms of meeting space, study rooms, children’s and teen space, we reached a consensus on a final design.  A proposal before the Town Council was scheduled (at their August meeting) to request a vote that the project be moved forward.
    • August 13, 2018 – Many of our supporters from the town attended this Town Council meeting.  Due to the overwhelming presence, the Library project was unanimously voted to move forward. So, we are now a step closer to fulfillment of our goal and that is a step further than any of the previous proposals have gone.  One of the Town Council members who has served for many years, told us that there has NEVER been such a turnout for a project.  Thank you all so very much for braving the crowd, the heat, and the inability to hear or sit – it proved without a shadow of doubt how important the Library is to our community.
    • September 12, 2018 – We are not there yet, though. As is protocol, the Town Council has sent the project to the Finance Board, who must approve it, as well.  They will meet on Wednesday, September 12 at 7:00 PM in the E. Paul Martin Room in Town Hall (same place as the Town Council) and we could use some support at that meeting, too.  If the Finance Board approves it, they will send it back to the Town Council to set a date for either a Town Meeting or a referendum.  Thanks to you, we are getting there!!!
    • November 7, 2018 – Well long time since we posted an update, but it is all good news. After a Town referendum asking yes or no on the new Library, the vote passed with 70% for YES and 30% for NO. So we have been busy with the architects and the Building Committee and the Town to get moving ahead on our project. Click here to see the final designs!
    • August 27, 2019 – Believe it or not, the project is still moving along!  For months since the November vote, the Building Committee and the architects have been meeting and they are in the process of selecting an engineering firm from the bids that are due by the end of the month.  Stay tuned and we will post any updates!
    • November 1, 2019 – The architects are preparing documents to go back out to bid. Library staff are sorting and cleaning, getting the collection ready to be moved into our temporary location, within the Library, as the phased modernization project gets carried out. Youth programs continue to be offered at the Marsh Parish Hall at the First Congregational Church. Children’s books will be available for circulation from this location. However, we ask that returns are made to our book drops outside the main library. A display featuring updated poster boards and “The History of New Milford Library Through the Years” is on display.
    • January 15, 2020 – Though it is winter, spring is in the air when one is about to embark on a renovation project. We have sent our contract back to Hartford in order to accept the CT State Construction grant from the State Librarian. Our architects have delivered the plans and spec book, massive tomes that are available for viewing while in the Library, just ask your friendly circulation desk assistants to bring them to a table for you. Fixtures and furnishings have been selected. The State approved contractor has walked the building with the architects and will be reporting back their findings. The Library Board of Trustees is prepared to “go out to bid” for third time as a back-up plan. Departments in Town Hall are all busy working to support the Library’s project. Spring is in the air? Yes, because our shovel in the ground start-date is approaching.
    • June 8, 2020 – The Library’s long awaited modernization project will be moving forward. The Library’s Building Committee will hold a groundbreaking ceremony on June 26th. Mobilization of this project will occur on July 1, 2020. Currently, staff is working inside the building moving, boxing up, storing, labeling, and adjusting our catalog to reflect that items will either be put in storage or made available in our new library space. Our temporary library will be operated out of the two floors of the 1897 building over the next 18 months. We strongly encourage patrons to sign onto our Facebook page and access our web site to keep abreast of the current status of the library and our services to you, our patrons.
    • October 9, 2020 – Well we are well into our construction now! For a current explanation of where we are and where we are going, click here to read our most recent Press Release. Currently, although our library building is closed to the public due to the construction, our staff is available on-site from Mon-Fri from 9 AM – 5 PM to assist patrons, maintain the library collection and services and to provide curbside delivery for patrons. In addition, we are conducting many virtual and outdoor programs for patrons of all ages. Visit our web site, where you can access the library calendar, information about the various programs, the different department newsletters, a variety of library services and a tremendous offering of e-resources. Also sign onto our Facebook page to keep abreast of the newest happenings at NMPL!