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3/24/2011
NCCo Administration decision to locate Claymont County Library on Darley Green 7 acre parcel on Darley Rd in the "crescent" park across from Woodshaven County Park

After over a year of trying to determine the best location for the construction of the Claymont Library, we are pleased to inform Council that we are prepared to make a site selection.

As Council is aware, the Administration has been analyzing two potential sites – a site in the Darley Green Development and a site at the old Children’s Home on Green Street.  Commonwealth offered the county a land donation of just over 1 acre of land within the center of the Darley Green development for the location of the library.  The county was also exploring the possibility of purchasing the old Children’s Home site on Green Street through the use of Neighborhood Stabilization Funds.  

After careful review and input from Council members, the Friends of the Claymont Library, community leaders and the public, the Administration has decided to locate the site of the Claymont Library at Darley Green; however, the location within the development has changed.

Instead of locating the site at the original 1 acre location in the center of the Darley Green development, the library will now be located at the 7.5 acres of land on the development that is off of Darley Road.  Attached is a map that highlights the new location.  Commonwealth has offered the county a land donation of the 7.5 acres.  We feel that this location addresses many of the concern raised.  The 7.5 acres will allow the county to construct a stand alone library, with ample parking and amenities, such as a reading garden around the library.  The location of the 7.5 acres is off of Darley Road directly across from Woodshaven Kruse and there is already bus access at the site.  Since this land is adjacent to our park we can integrate walking trails and other outdoor activates as part of the library, school and recreational programs.  In addition, we may be able to partner with other nature groups to create wetlands, natural habitat and rain gardens as part of the storm water maintenance facility to further our educational program at the libraries.

The 7.5 acres of land had originally been designed to hold the stormwater management for Darley Green.  Now that Commonwealth is transferring that land to the county, the county will now take over the stormwater management of the site and the library.  We feel the county can manage the stormwater more efficiently, while staying within our budget.

The Department of Community Services will be scheduling a briefing for council on the new site at an upcoming Community Services Committee Meeting.

With regards to the site at Green Street, we want to thank the Catholic Dioceses for working with us.  Unfortunately, the Dioceses appraisal on the site came back at $1.6 million, almost double the county’s appraisal.  We were also informed by HUD that we would not be allowed to use NSP funds for the acquisition of the site.  

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