Children waving pompons celebrated the reopening of the Hereford library branch on Tuesday, following a $3 million renovation.
The library branch on York Road in northern Baltimore County had been closed since last summer, when a water pipe broke and flooded the building. That led Baltimore County officials to accelerate a renovation for the building that had been planned for 2017.
The renovated library covers both floors of the building, doubling the space for books, computers and meeting areas. Previously, tenants used the second floor.
With 15,000 square feet of space, the library features self-service kiosks for checking out books, several computers for public use, a bar with outlets for laptop use, community meeting rooms, a quiet study area and The Hive, which is described as "a collaborative art/maker space."
Baltimore County Councilman Wade Kach thanked library employees, county workers and others involved in the renovation. "I also want to thank the leaking pipes," the Cockeysville Republican said to a round of laughs. "I think I know how to get more projects funded early on, so watch out!"
Kach, Baltimore County Executive Kevin Kamenetz, schools library system director Paula Miller and other officials then cut a ceremonial ribbon, as children wearing blue summer reading club T-shirts cheered them on.
The county also kicked off its summer reading club with the theme, "On your mark, get set, read!" Children and adults enrolled in the program can win prizes for reading.