Chula Vista Library Awarded Nearly $20M in State Funding for Upgrades to Aging Facilities

Libraries South Bay
Chula Vista Civic Center library. Photo credit: Screen shot, Google Street View

The Chula Vista Public Library has been awarded nearly $19.5 million in state grants to make critical upgrades at the Civic Center and South Branch libraries.

The grants, each worth $9.74 million, are part of the California State Library’s Building Forward Library Facilities Improvement Program. Renovations are expected to be completed in 2027.

“These grants from the California State Library allow the library to implement much-needed
enhancements to our facilities to ensure they continue to support future generations,” said Deputy Director of Community Services Joy Whatley, who led the effort to secure the funding.

The library recently learned that the projects were among 34 local libraries chosen across the state to receive a portion of nearly $173 million in state funding.

The awards are part of the second round of the largest single investment made by the state in California’s public libraries. In the first round of the Building Forward program, the
state provided more than $312 million in grants in 182 cities across 34 counties.

Construction is expected to begin in March 2024, and the upgrades at the two libraries will likely be completed simultaneously, Whatley said

Work at the Civic Center Branch project will include upgrades to electrical panels and services, the HVAC system, interior and exterior paint and stucco and the replacement of an outdated elevator.

The library was built in 1976 on the site of the former F Street Elementary School and attracts more than 600,000 visitors a year.

The South Branch improvements will include replacement of flooring, upgrades to the HVAC and electrical systems, repair and painting of the interior and exterior stucco and additional repairs throughout the facility.

The South Branch was built in 1995 and receives more than 190,000 visitors a year.