After 20 years of serving the community, the Orange County Library System has decided to permanently close the Herndon Branch library located at 4324 E. Colonial Drive.
OCLS tweeted on Tuesday, "After thoughtful consideration, the Orange County Library System Board of Trustees voted on May 14, 2020 not to extend the lease for the Herndon Branch library." The decision was based on challenges with the location and the current economic environment.The Herndon Branch book drop will close on June 1, and customers are directed to the other 15 OCLS locations, including the Orlando Public Library, which is 3.5 miles from Herndon, and the Chickasaw Branch, which is 4.6 miles away. Those locations will open for essential services only on May 26. Currently, only a select few branches are open at limited capacity. OCLS is promotes their various online amenities and home-delivery service.
The Herndon Branch had 6 full-time and 7 part-time employees, according to OCPS public relations administrator (and former Orlando Weekly editor) Erin Sullivan, who says they will all be transferred to other library locations.
"We are currently in a hiring freeze, and we have 14 vacant positions, so Herndon staff could help us fill those roles," wrote Sullivan. "We aren't planning to open a new location in that area at this time."
OCLS has been working with a real estate broker to look for a new library location, which can be a complex undertaking.
"Some of the plazas do not want non-retail business," says Sullivan, since libraries are government facilities. "Some have non-compete clauses due to other businesses, and some were simply not within our budget."
Find out more about which branches are reopening and more on the library system's website, ocls.info.
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