The Times-Herald, Newnan, Georgia

2007 October 11

Editorial

 

Let's all come together to ensure bright future for

Carnegie Building

 

What's the future of the historic Carnegie Building, one of the most notable structures in our beautiful Court Square in downtown Newnan?

 

It appears the future is bright for the building which was built with a personal $10,000 grant from philanthropist Andrew Carnegie and opened in 1904. The building was a library until the Newnan-Coweta Library was built on Hospital Road in 1987. Since then the Carnegie Building had been used for office space and court functions until the new Coweta Justice Center was opened in 2006.

 

So what's ahead for the now vacant facility?

We think the future for the Carnegie Building can be bright because there appears to be a commitment from both the public and private sectors to restore the building and determining the best use of the landmark.

 

Since the court operations moved out of the building, the city has begun work on stabilizing and restoring the building. More work must be done. A citizens committee Friends of the Carnegie has been busy exploring uses of the building. The Friends have looked at a city library in Sylacauga, Ala., and had the librarian there visit Carnegie and offer suggestions. Friends have distributed a community survey seeking input on what citizens want in the historic building. That survey indicates people would like a library that would include a reading room, wireless access, children's programs and brown bag lunch programs.

 

Today, a dormant library committee appointed by the city years ago will meet to discuss the future of the Carnegie Building. This committee was reactivated by Newnan Council to offer guidance to the council.

 

With today's meeting and as future talks and decisions are made about the use of the Carnegie Building, we hope this reactivated committee, the Friends of the Carnegie and other interested citizens will be a part of the process. Don't shut anyone out.

 

We applaud the Friends of the Carnegie for their work in getting this project moving. The mayor and council members seem committed to moving forward. We hope this resurrected committee will reach out to the Friends and other citizens to ensure that this unique landmark continues to be a useful, vibrant part of our downtown landscape.