Columbia, SC (WLTX) - What was once a library in Richland County District 5 was shut down 30 years ago and now serves as a Masonic Lodge.
Lions Street Community Association President Marvin Heller says after decades, that void will finally be filled with the announcement of a new library.
"There's so many people who could use more opportunities for research," said Heller. "We have seniors and they want to know more about medical treatments, we have young people who are applying for college or are doing research for their current school."
The new branch will be next to the Cecil Tillis Center on Oak Street in the heart of the Edgewood neighborhood.
"It's not going to be swept out and put books in," said Richland County District Five Councilman, Seth Rose. "It's going to be made into a top notch facility."
Rose and District Two councilman Reverend Ed McDowell say over a million dollars will be invested into the building. They say it's a collaboration between the county, Richland Library and Columbia Housing Authority with help from nearby business owners, like Deacon Felder of Hill's Barber Shop.
"Parents will bring their children and sit across the street from his barber shop to use the WiFi from the barber shop so their kids can do school projects and things of that nature," said Rose. "I really felt like there was a strong need to bring this back."
"There's some logistics that we've got to do, there's some renovations that's got to be done in the new library, so in about 12 months we should have our library," said McDowell.
While books themselves serve as reminders of what happened in the past, Heller says this building too, is a piece of history itself.
"It's taken a lot of people over a long period of time who have dedicated their efforts toward this happening so that's gratifying," said Heller.
Rose says they're currently figuring out where the funds will come from and expect the branch to be open by next summer.