Library receives property


St. Francis Health has donated the Marian Clinic building and property at 1001 SW Garfield Avenue to The Library Foundation. The property will provide opportunities for expansion to the land-locked library.

“On behalf of the Board of Trustees of the Topeka and Shawnee County Public Library, I’d like to express our thanks and deep appreciation for this generous gift,” said Gina Millsap, CEO of the Topeka & Shawnee County Public Library. “As it has since 1909, St. Francis continues its tradition of caring for and commitment to the Topeka community.”

This gift of property provides a one-time opportunity to acquire land to meet the library’s long and short-term growth needs. The short-term plan for the property would include demolition of the existing building and development of additional parking. “With over 3,000 visitors a day, the library is a well-used community gathering place,” said Millsap. “For the past several years, the library has experienced a shortage of parking spaces at peak times, especially when popular programs and classes are in session and community groups are using the meeting rooms.”

Long-range plans for the property will be developed as part of the library’s Facilities Master Plan [PDF], approved by the Board of Trustees in July, 2016. The funding for this project will come from private donors.

“St. Francis Health is very pleased to be able to donate this piece of property to The Library Foundation,” said David Setchel, President of St. Francis Health. “In looking at potential uses for the property that would continue to benefit the Topeka community, this was a perfect fit. We are so fortunate to have a library of this caliber in Topeka, and we hope this donation will allow them to continue to expand the outstanding services that the library provides to our community. When we approached our parent ministry, SCL Health, about the donation, they gave their full support and blessing.  We are very proud to help the library move forward with their plans for the future.”

Leah is a former employee and wrote many stories and articles for the library.