Florence-Firestone residents are poised to get a bigger and better library in their community after the Board of Supervisors unanimously approved a new site for the Florence Library. In November of last year, The Board of Supervisors (Board) agreed to set aside a total of $5.7 million for this project.
With approximately double the space of the original library, the new Florence Library will serve as a one-stop hub for constituent services, including workforce and economic development opportunities, senior assistance, and more.
“Last year, I committed to finding the best location possible for the Florence Library – a larger, more accessible and technically advanced facility that would provide resources to individuals of all ages,” Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas said. “I am pleased that this vision has now come to fruition through the collaborative work of the community. Moving forward with a location that offers such a unique opportunity to create a true community civic center is the best and most efficient way to ensure this critical resource is delivered to the community.”
“I have always been, and remain, deeply committed to the people who call Florence-Firestone home,” he added. “I look forward to working collaboratively with this community to get this project off the ground and on a fast-track to a speedy completion.”
Several community leaders were excited about the new site, includig Florence-Firestone Community Leader, Martha Escobedo.
“After a long-awaited return, I am really excited and eager for this project to be completed. It’s been a huge hurdle, but we did it, we achieved our goal. I am really proud of the community. I thank the Supervisor and his staff for their transparency and for working with us throughout this process to make us feel comfortable. This new library is a reflection of his dedication to the community. This facility will be useful to a lot of individuals and open to anyone that wants to be a part of it. This library is one of the few resources in the community, and I am happy that we will be able to embrace the people, encourage them to get educated, and teach them to value and appreciate our culture.”
Support also came from Florence-Firestone Community Leaders President Dominique Medina.
“The Florence-Firestone Community Leaders are delighted that the Florence-Firestone community will be getting a new modern Library where people will be able to gather to explore, interact, and imagine. We supported the Library being built on Compton Avenue because the Library will be central to the community. It will serve both the youth and senior population alike. The Library will be a great community center for our diverse population.”
The original library, previously located at 1610 East Florence Avenue, was built in 1970. At 5,000 square feet, it was one of the smaller facilities within the County Public Library system and long overdue for renovation or replacement.
“We’re delighted to have a permanent location for Florence Library with new furniture, new computers, and a larger library area for our community. Children, teens, and adults will be able to have their own separate areas, as well as two shared community meeting spaces for larger programs and activities. With Los Angeles County Department Of Workforce Development, Aging and Community Services (WDACS), and the Register-Recorder’s Office in the same building, it is an opportunity to collaborate and provide a one-stop shop to our Florence-Firestone residents. I look forward to working with the County team to ensure the best library and community space for Florence-Firestone,” stated Community Library Manager, Julian Zamora.
“Libraries are fundamental to our community and offer resources and opportunities for learning that are essential to advancing the education of our future generations. The Florence Library has been an ongoing endeavor with the Florence-Firestone community. I believe the relocation of the library, along with the state-of-the-art improvements that come with it, will be of great benefit to our younger generation and community,” stated Edwin Hernandez, Executive Director of the Florence-Firestone/Walnut Park Chamber of Commerce.
With the new Florence Library, the County hopes to include several new features, including child, teen, homework, adult, and technology areas – all aimed at providing students and individuals with a safe space to access the information that they need.