Frequently Asked Questions

Updated April, 2014
Why do we need to renovate and expand the library?

The 5,783 square foot building does not meet the needs of our growing community of over 15,000 residents.

  • Built in 1895, our Library has been renovated and expanded only once - in 1967- when the original building was connected to the adjacent Episcopal Church (also built in 1895).
  • The Children’s Room (just 800 square feet) is a cramped area with minimal space for books and multimedia materials and extremely limited space for story times or activities.
  • The renovation will make the library Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) compliant, including the Children’s Room on the second floor which currently is not accessible to wheelchairs or strollers.
  • Young Adults (YA or teens) do not have dedicated space for studying, doing research, working on projects and gathering, and minimal space for YA collections.
  • Book, DVD, and audio book collections are limited due to lack of space.
  • Library programs can only be held in the Main Reading Room, prohibiting patrons and groups from working, studying or using computers during programs.
  • The library has no dedicated parking lot for its patrons.
  • Processing, circulation, storage and staff areas are insufficient for increased material demand.

What are the benefits of renovating and expanding the library?

  • Creates a social and intellectual hub for the community.
  • Houses an extensive collection of books, multi-media items, magazines and newspapers.
  • Creates a Children’s Room with space for a larger collection, technology tools, appropriately sized reading area and a separate story time/program room.
  • Provides a safe and inviting space for our young adults to study, use computers and socialize.
  • Offers public access to a historical room for research of local history and genealogy collection.
  • Provides up to 38 computers for Internet access and more space to utilize Wi-Fi access.
  • Houses a technology classroom for all ages to learn and apply new technologies.
  • Includes a multipurpose room for library programs, community events and after-hour use.
  • Energy efficient and environmentally friendly building.
  • Helps strengthen the vitality of downtown and enhances the town’s strong service infrastructure.
  • Adaptable and flexible space capable of meeting the changing needs of our town.

Will Library usage increase in coming years?

  • Hopkinton is a fast growing Massachusetts community, especially in the last 25 years. The total 2012 population of 15,812 represents a 72% increase from 1990 (9,191 residents), and a 179% increase from 1967 (5,659 residents), when the library was last renovated.
  • Over the last five years, borrowing of library material has increased 28%, computer use has increased 43% and attendance at library programs has increased 80%. Over half of Hopkinton’s residents have library cards.
  • Legacy Farms plans to build 940 housing units with 2,020 more residents, including 250 children. Several other single family and condominium developments will bring more people to Hopkinton. With the increased population, the demand for library services will also increase.

What is the size of the renovated and expanded Library?

A 22,000 square foot building on 2 floors with adaptable and flexible space capable of meeting the changing needs of our Town and serving all segments of the community from infants to seniors.

How was the size of our new library determined?

The MBLC funds library building projects that serve communities for at least the next 20 years. This makes sense because the level of investment required for any building project must be based on a plan that projects a long service life of the building. Hopkinton’s population will top 20,000 residents in the next 20 years. The size of our new Library is proportionate to the projected increase in Hopkinton’s population.

What will happen to library services during renovation?

Most likely the library will be relocated to a temporary location. Accessibility of library resources will be determined by the capacity of the temporary facility.

Why now?

  • Hopkinton is currently #3 on a waiting list to receive a $4.5 million library construction grant from the MBLC (Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners.) This grant may become available in 2014!
  • The 120-year old library building is deteriorating. A total $1.1 million in repairs and maintenance has been identified in the Facilities Assessment Report completed in 2012. This report identified the library as one of three buildings currently not meeting the needs of the community.
  • The growing population and the increasing demand for library services.
  • The need to adapt the space for 21st Century library uses – access to new technology, adequate library resources, meeting spaces, space for educational, entertaining and cultural programs and activities.

What is the Town’s cost?

In 2011, the total projected cost of the renovation and expansion project was $10.2 million, and included escalation and project contingency costs until 2014. With the addition of escalation and project contingency costs until 2016, (the projected opening date of the new library), the cost is now estimated to be $11.7 million. With the State Library Construction Grant of $4.5 million and private fundraising expected to raise $1 million, the cost to town will be reduced to $6.25 million. Visit the Foundation website

What is my cost, or the tax impact on residents?

The initial cost is approximately $95 per year in taxes per average (valued at $484, 360 in FY 2014) household, starting no earlier than FY 2017 for 20 years. The amount wil go down each year over a 20 year period as the town pays back principal on the bond.  

Why do we need a library in the digital age?

The mission of the 21st century library goes far beyond lending books and providing print resources. In this digital era, there is increased demand to provide access to library materials and information resources in multiple formats. Libraries also provide services for digital literacy which is now essential for accessing and understanding information and for achieving lifelong learning. Libraries serve as a gathering place where people of all ages meet, enjoy a wide variety of educational, historical, musical, cultural and entertaining programs, and have free computer access to the Internet and other electronic tools. In a growing number of cities and towns, the library becomes the hub of the community, serving as a place for civic engagement.

What is the proposed timeline for the renovation and expansion of Hopkinton Public Library?
  • May 2014: Hopkinton Annual Town Meeting & Town Election Approves funding
  • July 2014: $4.5 million state grant issued
  • Jan. 2015 - Dec 2015: Design refinement, town approval and bidding
  • Dec. 2015 - Temporary library relocation
  • March 2016 –  Construction begins
  • Fall/Winter 2017 - Library opens!
To learn more about the renovation and expansion of Hopkinton Library, visit the Library,, To reach the Hopkinton Public Library Foundation go to, or contact the Library Trustees at