New Kingston branch library receives $1 million donation

KINGSTON — A $1 million donation to the Kingston Village Green Foundation for the proposed new branch library has put the project a stone's throw away from its $6 million goal.

The donation was announced during the "Gather for the Green" event Jan. 26, which began with a group photo outlining the proposed community center's footprint, and ended with a soup lunch and update on the project.

The donation was given from a family member of Anne Petter, through the Kitsap Community Foundation, to Kitsap Regional Library. The $1 million donation is the largest single donation the foundation has ever made, community foundation Executive Director Kol Medina said. The donor remained anonymous, but has close ties to Kingston, Medina said.

Prior to the announcement, Village Green Foundation executive director Nick Jewett said his foundation has raised $4.1 million in state and foundation grants and private pledges, and with this donation needs to raise another $1.5 million.

Tomi Whalen, branch manager for the Little Boston and Kingston libraries, was impressed by the number of people who showed up in support of the project at "Gather for the Green." More than 300 people attended the group photo at the start of the event at 3 p.m. in Village Green Park, with that number expected to grow as the day went on.

"This is spectacular," Whalen said.

The donated money will be given in $250,000 chunks for four years, Medina said. The money, coming from a donor-advised fund, will go toward library construction and furnishing.

The 5,000-square-foot library will be part of the 21,000-square-foot community center, which will also have space for a Boys & Girls Club. Also part of the Village Green: The existing park, a P-patch garden, and 35 senior apartments and 42 off-street parking spaces, according to documents from Kitsap County Department of Community Development.

The Village Green Foundation is leading the fundraising for the community center, which the foundation will own; the Village Green Metropolitan Park District will maintain the building and the park. Martha & Mary owns one acre, the site of the senior apartments.

Kitsap Regional Library has advertised a request for qualifications for architectural firms interested in designing the library interior.

The Village Green Foundation has engaged architect Miles Yanich to design the building, but KRL will be responsible for the design of the interior of its space and also will provide construction drawings for its part of the building so the entire job can be bid as one project.

Kitsap County owns and will continue to operate a wastewater pump station at the Village Green.



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