MONROE (WWJ/AP) – Officials in Monroe are considering buying and renovating a former Masonic Temple property to open a new library downtown.
The city council has unanimously approved a purchase option for the property, located on North Monroe Street along the River Raisin, the Monroe News reported.READ MORE: The Detroit Demolition Department Awarding Contracts To Detroit-Based Black Owned Businesses
The next step is to hire a firm to conduct an architectural analysis of the building. The council could choose to buy the building for $515,000 by the end of May.
The city would pay for the purchase and renovations through loans and its general fund, as well as with grants and private donations.
Officials say the new library won’t replace the Navarre branch or Dorsch Memorial library, which had been considered for expansion.READ MORE: Fund Pays Back Tax Debt Of 1,600 Detroit Homeowners
However, City Manager George Brown told the council an expansion of the Dorsch Memorial branch would have been too expensive, at around $2 million. He said the Masonic Temple, which has roughly is 16,000 square feet over three floors, is a better option based on cost and space.
Potential plans for the new library include space for a café, reading rooms and a Mason’s meeting room that could be used as a theater or community space.
TM and © Copyright 2014 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2014 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.MORE NEWS: Detroit Man Charged In Connection With Son's Fatal Shooting