All for proposals on Benny Library

By Joel Ceausu

Côte des Neiges–Notre Dame de Grâce has officially called for proposals concerning a new role for the building at 3465 Benny, which will become vacant after the opening of the long-awaited NDG Cultural Centre and new library up the street on Monkland.

The borough is appealing to non-profit organizations for practical and sustainable proposals to consider, and will prioritize projects favouring cultural, sports, leisure or social development initiatives.

The building needs to be repurposed quickly according to borough documents, to avoid vacating it without a solid plan for the future and to prevent it from deteriorating.

The old library, which has operated in NDG for 59 years, will remain occupied until late this year to assure a smooth transition between the old and new libraries.

The building, once serving as a chapel for St. Monica’s Church, is in good shape, requiring only regular maintenance, and is described as “retaining all the architectural charms of the original chapel and a warm and inviting family atmosphere.”
The borough has indicated it has no wish to remain the long-term owner of the property, whose value is estimated at $1.6 million.

Benny’s hours of operations were cut last year, open only 30 hours a week, and closed on Sundays as part of a reduction of the borough’s library budget.

The call for proposals will run until March, and applicants can visit the site until March 28. Public presentation of selected projects is scheduled for April 2015 and approval will be done in late June.

A detailed call for proposals is available on the CDN-NDG borough website, and proposal documents are available at the Accès Montréal Office, 5160 Décarie.
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