Federal funding to make new Guelph central library more environmentally friendly

The City of Guelph is receiving federal funding for the new central library that is currently under construction.

The federal Green and Inclusive Community Building program is providing $13.5 million to make the 88,000 sq. ft. building more environmentally friendly.

An announcement was held Monday morning near the construction site on Baker Street, and was attended by Guelph MP Lloyd Longfield, Mayor Cam Guthrie, members of council and city staff.

“We getting to a new place … that is going to transform a former parking lot and becoming a new municipal building in the downtown,” Longfield said.

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“The library is not only a place of satisfying curiosity and creativity, but also a place where we can respect the environment.”

Longfield was there to announce the funding on behalf of Sean Fraser, the federal Minister of Housing, Infrastructure and Communities.

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In addition to greenspace and being more energy efficient, the funding will also go toward the installation of backup power sources and heating. This will help the building operate as an emergency shelter and be able to withstand severe weather events.

“This funding is going to help directly with trying to help with meeting with emissions targets, … more specifically, cutting greenhouse gas emissions by 63 per cent by 2030,” Guthrie said.

The new funding is expected to help the city bring down the cost of the estimated $62 million building. The new library will replace the current central library on Norfolk Street and will be the centrepiece of the Baker Street District redevelopment project.

“This is part of a massive renewal program for our entire downtown,” Guthrie said. “Over the next several years, you’re going to be seeing a lot of investments into our downtown core.”

Work on the new library began last June and is expected to be completed by the fall of 2026.

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