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Nashua Public Library plaza to undergo makeover

NASHUA — In an effort to beautify the entrance to the Nashua Public Library, and to deter skateboard use outside of the facility, a renovation project is being planned for the library’s plaza.

Currently, there are three levels of deteriorating stairs between the theater building at 14 Court St. and the library’s front doors. “The steps themselves are heaved up in places and eroding. They have been there for over 40 years,” said Jennifer Hinderer, director of the library. “It doesn’t look that great.”

A proposal to renovate the plaza with escrow funds and money collected from the library’s lost and damaged book fines will soon be reviewed by the aldermanic Finance Committee for consideration.

The project is estimated to cost about $19,750, and will include significant landscaping work, according to the proposal.

“This really is a beautification project for the whole area,” said Hinderer.

According to Hinderer, skateboarders utilize the three levels of steps on a daily basis. “They are good kids, and they are having fun. But, I fear someone will get hurt,” she said. The Finance Committee was originally expected to vote on the funding this week, but the issue was delayed as officials consider whether to add Court Street sidewalk improvements to the overall library plaza project.

According to the proposal, the existing concrete stairs will be removed and replaced with planters filled with hardy native plants. Granite features will be added to discourage skateboarding, and the existing light fixtures will be replaced with solar lights that match the new, downtown lighting scheme.

“I think this will be a great benefit to the public, and the area will look very nice once it is completed,” said Hinderer. “I am really excited.”

The renovation project was first floated about two years ago, and Hinderer said she is pleased it will finally come to fruition. The proposed contract with Saint’s Landscaping of Nashua requires the work to be completed by September, but Hinderer said she is hopeful construction will take place in July.

In addition to the plants and new light fixtures, turtle sculptures that were created during a previous Nashua International Sculpture Symposium will be installed as part of the renovation project.

Hinderer stressed that no trees will be removed, but plantings will be added around existing trees, and the new planters will enhance the greenery even further.

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