If you enjoy the twice-yearly Friends of the Library Book Sale at Magnuson Park, this is important news. This e-mail from Friends of the Library is making the rounds:
As some of you may know, questions have arisen in the past about the continued use of the hangar in Building 30 at Magnuson Park where we hold our book sales. Recently the Parks Department was notified by the Department of Planning and Development and the Fire Marshall’s office that, since holding events in Building 30 has been a non-conforming use, the building requires updates to meet current code to become an event facility. Therefore, DPD will now seriously curtail the number of events permitted.
Although the Book Sale will be able to hold its spring 2011 and fall 2011 sales, there is no guarantee that we will be able to continue to do so in the future. Seattle, famous as a city of readers, would lose an event that enables thousands of families the opportunity to purchase books they may not otherwise be able to afford. The Book Sale recycles back into the community hundreds of thousands of books each year.
Bringing Building 30 up to code would preserve this unique space to ensure a permanent community event venue for the Book Sale and for numerous other events, many of which are nonprofits. This would serve a large number of organizations benefiting the cultural richness of our city and providing a future revenue stream for the city. There is no other comparable facility available in Seattle which nonprofits could afford to use.
Please contact the Seattle City Council and Mayor and urge them to find the funds to renovate Building 30 so that the Book Sale and other events can continue to provide important contributions to the greater Seattle community.
The Friends of the Library do very good work and their book sale is one of the highlights of Seattle's literary calendar. (Proceeds from the sale also provide significant annual donations for SPL, which is already strapped for cash.) If you care about SPL, you should let the City Council and Mayor McGinn know that this is important to you.