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The Poudre River Public Library District was created in response to ongoing city budget cuts coupled with a growing community need for library services. In November, 2006, a citizens' initiative group called "Libraries-Yes!" worked to place a question on Larimer County's general election ballot for the formation of a regional library district. Larimer County residents overwhelmingly voted to support the establishment and funding of the Poudre River Public Library District. The new district, which was established at the beginning of 2007, was designed to create a stable source of funding for public libraries through a 3-mill property tax increase (which in 2006 was approximately $3.98 per month on a $200,000 home).

Map of Library District Area Served
The Library District serves a large regional area within Larimer County, Colo. The district's boundaries are essentially the same boundaries as those of the Poudre School District.

In accordance with the ballot, the Poudre River Public Library District is charged with providing services including: maintaining, improving and expanding library services and facilities; increasing hours of operation at Old Town and Harmony Libraries; opening and operating the new Council Tree Library; and providing enhanced library services and operations such as re-establishing and adding new book drops in Fort Collins and the surrounding area, buying new books and media and improving programs for children, teens and adults.

Governance, Current Priorities and Funding
In March, 2007, city and county officials selected the District's first seven-member Board of Trustees to oversee the transition, operations and future plans of the new district. Guided by a seven-member board of trustees and supported with a 3-mill property tax, the District looks to a future full of possibility. The board has fulfilled its most important commitments to citizens: restoring library services and positions; opening and operating a the new Council Tree Library in southeast Fort Collins; created an intergovernmental agreement for the District, the City of Fort Collins and Larimer County; and developing a long-range vision for library services throughout the District. In all its endeavors, the District aims to enrich the cultural, educational and economic life of the growing regional area which it serves.

District Branches and Services
The award winning Poudre River Public Library District includes three branches. More than 3,000 people visit the libraries each day, and more than 120,000 have library cards. The libraries offer a broad collection of books, audiobooks, DVDs and movies; and sponsors over 1,000 diverse exhibits, presentations and performances per year. Over 2,343,595 items were circulated in 2008, a 6.5% increase over 2007.

The District is committed to identifying and employing new technologies that improve our ability to serve our customers. In 2008, the District adopted an RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) system for all our circulation functions. The RFID self-service system along with our online e-commerce functions have greatly improved our ability to handle an increasing demand for library materials with maximum efficiency.

Old Town Library

The Old Town Library is located at 201 Peterson Street. The 43,000 square-foot facility houses a collection of more than 377,000 items. The Old Town Library circulates more than one million items per year.

Harmony Library

The Harmony Library is a 30,000 square-foot facility, located at 4616 S. Shields Street was opened in 1998. It is a unique joint use facility with Front Range Community College and contains over 159,000 items in its collection. The Harmony Library includes the Electronic Literacy Center, a newly refurnished teen area and is home to the Friends of the Library used book store.

Council Tree Library

Council Tree Library opened on March 28, 2009 and is located at Front Range Village, a retail development near the corners of Harmony and Ziegler. Located in the most rapidly growing area of the District, this branch is a unique neighborhood library with an emphasis on families with young children. This 17,000 square-foot facility has a generational arrangement, with adult, children and teen areas. Comfortable, inviting spaces and seating, natural and ambient lighting, sound containment features and environmentally responsible construction striving for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Gold Certification.

For more information on the Poudre River Public Library District, see the 2007 & 2008 Annual Reports.

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Poudre River Public Library District, 201 Peterson Street, Fort Collins, CO 80524, (970) 221-6740
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