Got plans for the weekend? If not, we suggest checking out the brand spankin’ new, state-of-the-art East Asheville Library at 902 Tunnel Rd. The site, which has been closed for construction since late December of 2019, will officially reopen to the public on Sat., May 1 at 12 p.m. Tocelebrate the completion of the ~$6.9 million project, there will bean on-site grand opening and ribbon-cutting ceremony at 11 a.m.
While many are simply excited to have their neighborhood library back, the revamped space is also symbolic for what’s to come across Buncombe County. Jim Blanton, Buncombe County Library Director, has cited the new building as “the standard for Buncombe County’s library system moving forward.”
Photo courtesy of Buncombe County
So, what’s so innovative about it? For starters, it’s the county’s first LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certified building. This means that it’s recognized as a healthy, highly efficient, and cost-saving green building by the most widely used green building rating system in the world. To achieve this status, it’s been designed with a variety of energy efficiencies, including water-use reductions, optimized energy systems, use of low-emitting materials, electric vehicle charging stations + more.
Photo courtesy of Buncombe County
The 13,906 sqft building — which is now 5 times bigger than the original — has also bulked up its facilities, transforming the space into what Jim describes as “a vibrant hub for discovery and engagement.” It will be the first of Buncombe’s libraries to offer rooms for studying and small group meetings, including a dedicated space for art programming, a children’s activities room + a 1,402 sqft community room that’s equipped with projectors.
Adjacent to the building, there’s also a community playground + basketball court, as well as new crosswalks that have been installed at Tunnel and Avonroadsin order to help neighbors safely walk to the site. Fun fact: These features were developed as a result of an extensive community input process, which involved numerous community sessions.
Ready to see what all the hype is about? Stop by and check it out during its hours of operation: Tuesday, 2-7:00 p.m., Wednesday + Thursday (1-6:00 p.m.), and Friday + Saturday (10 a.m.- 2 p.m.)
Coronavirus ○ On Wed., Gov. Roy Cooper announced that starting Fri., Apr. 30, North Carolinians will be allowed to assemble in larger groups and gather outdoorswithout having to wear a mask. Mass gathering capacities have increased from 50 to 100 people indoors + from 100 to 200 outdoors. ○ Check out the latest COVID-19 stats for NC from the Department of Health and Human Services here. As of Wednesday afternoon, 17,349 cases and 313 deaths have been reported in Buncombe County. See more Buncombe County-specific info, including waitlist numbers and vaccines distributed, here. ○ The CDC has updated its guidelines for those fully vaccinated(2 weeks after final dose). Check out those changes + recommendations here. 😷
Civic ○ Buncombe County Election Services has vacated its 77 McDowell St. location due to unsafe building conditions, water damage + mold. Election Services is now located at 50 Coxe Ave. + open to the public. Access online services here. 🏢 ○ At its April 27 meeting, Asheville City Council passed an ordinance that protects residents from discrimination at work and places of public accommodations. This move comes one week after the county passed a similar ordinance. Asheville’s ordinance is the 8th in the state that protects LGBTQ+ residents from discrimination. 🌈
Number ○ 89. The number of new townhome rentals proposed for Bent Creek. Intended for mid-market renters, the Broad River Village would include 16 buildings and largely contain 2 and 3 bedroom homes that run in the $1,200-$1,800 range. The project is set to go before the Buncombe County Board of Adjustment on June 9. 🏗️ (Asheville Citizen-Times)
Cause ○ Meals on Wheels has announced a virtual fundraiser, Miles for Meals. Beginning this May, participants can register to complete a 5K, 10K, marathon, or 660 Mega Mile Challenge by walking, running, hiking or biking. All proceeds help feed homebound seniors. 👟
And hey, while you’re at it, why not snag a tasty drink or snack at Session? The coffee, lunch, dinner + cocktail bar is located right inside Citizen Vinyl and is open Wed. through Sun., 11-9 p.m. 🎞️
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Show ○ Joe Hertler & The Rainbow Seekers | Thurs., Apr. 29 | 7 p.m. | Salvage Station, 468 Riverside Dr. | $20 | Groove + move with this funky soul group. 🎶 ○ Jerry Douglas Band | Thurs., Apr. 29 | 6-10 p.m. | Hazel Robinson Amphitheatre, 100 Gay St. | $25+ | Bluegrass from 14-time Grammy award winner Jerry Douglas. 🎻
Learn ○ Broom Making | Thurs., Apr. 29 | 10 a.m.-4 p.m. | Folk Art Center, Milepost 382, Blue Ridge Parkway | Free | Peter Werner demonstrates traditional broom-tying techniques. 🧹
TryThis ○ Salsa Lesson and Dance| Thurs., Apr. 29 | 7:15-8:15 p.m. | Club Eleven on Grove, 11 Grove St. | $10 | Get your groove on with some new moves. 💃
Disclaimer: It is up to readers’ discretion to determine whether they feel comfortable participating in any mentioned events based on COVID-19 protocols and precautions. If you have questions, please contact the event’s organizers directly.
The new Bombas spring collection features bright, unmissable patterns like tie dye, triple-colored Tri-Blocks, and tropical-inspired Wild Wear. They also made new All-Purpose Performance and Performance Running socks, designed with Hex Tec — Bombas’ signature sweat-wicking, stay-cool performance material — to keep feet comfy during any sweaty activity.
If you’re more of a casual stroll person, their new No Shows come in regular and low-cut styles, so they fit perfectly under spring slip-ons. Ⓟ
We have to admit, sharing these updates about the new library is making our nerdy, book-loving hearts explode a little bit. What new feature is exciting you the most at the East Asheville library? Let us know here.
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