Library going eco-friendly with latest renovations

Tyler Clarke
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Running on federal funding fumes, the John M. Cuelenaere Public Library is still spending money awarded to them in April.


Originally intended to help renovate the library’s children’s area, the $100,150 granted to the library from the Community Infrastructure Improvement Fund continues to prove useful, library director Alex Juorio said.

On Thursday, Energy Doctor employees were seen installing new windows on the library’s north end.

“We were told (the new windows) will cut back on our heating costs, significantly,” Juorio said, noting that the existing windows have been in place since the 40-year-old building was built.

The windows are also tinted to reduce the cost of air conditioning in the summer.

Some time before the end of the year, the library’s children’s area will see new LED light fixtures installed.

“The light is a warmer light -- it reaches into the corners of the building better, and 16 LED fixtures use the same energy as one existing light fixture,” Juorio explained.

Last year, the library saw a brand new air conditioner unit. Using a mixture of water and ethylene glycerol, which is cooled by a unit on the roof and transferred into the basement, the new unit replaces the old unit, which conked out a year previous.

The lighting and windows cap off a big construction year for the library, which also saw the children’s area completely re-done.

Helping look over these eco-friendly renovations is the library’s new deputy director Greg Elliott, who’s filling the vacancy left by Jaclyn McLean who found a position at the University of Saskatchewan.

The light is a warmer light -- it reaches into the corners of the building better, and 16 LED fixtures use the same energy as one existing light fixture. Alex Juorio

The deputy director position is a career advancement for Elliott, who started work in Prince Albert in October after filling related positions at the University of British Columbia.

Such a position does not “come along all the time, and really, there are so many different things I can do in this job and implement all the skills I’ve learned,” he said.

“It seems like a very vibrant community -- there’s lots to do.”

Elliott’s already endured one headache, when the library roof sprung a leak last month – a mini-crisis Juorio commends Elliott with organizing a quick response.

Despite the leak, Juorio notes that a recent inspection reveals that the building remains structurally sound, and that a permanent roof repair should be a relatively minor undertaking.

“The city has been up there and repaired it, and once the snow melts we’ll look at when we can fit a replacement of that membrane,” he summarized.

With winter their busy season, Juorio notes that library attendance is notably up over what they saw in the summer.

“In the winter we do more library as a destination-themed programs,” he said, noting that a series of puppet shows proved popular.

For the most up to date listing of library events, visit the library’s official website, online at

Organizations: Community Infrastructure Improvement Fund, University of Saskatchewan, University of British Columbia

Geographic location: Prince Albert

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