The Charlotte Mecklenburg Library’s main branch will reopen Saturday after a valve malfunctioned in a pipe in the basement, closing the building for several days.
The damaged pipe was discovered early Monday morning, said Ann Stawski, marketing and communications leader for the library. It’s unknown what caused the valve malfunction. The facility had been closed since, with no set date as to when it will reopen.
None of the library’s book collection was damaged, Stawski said. The basement houses mainly storage and promotional materials, many of which were ruined and would need to be replaced. On Thursday, workers had hauled out cardboard and bags of T-shirts.
On Thursday, large drying vents were along the library’s hallways, pumping in heat to dry out the standing water.
There was standing water in the library for several days, said William Mann, a worker with SpangleR Restoration, and there were still “a few puddles” in the basement as of Thursday. The carpet on the first floor will likely need to be replaced.
Air conditioning was “finally” restored to the building Thursday afternoon, Stawski said. Libraries are common destinations for homeless Charlotte residents to escape the heat, and are even recommended by city officials.
In the meantime, the library was sending patrons to the ImaginOn Center down the street for library needs and questions, and events had been relocated. Insurance is expected to pay for the repairs, Stawski said.