Spartanburg County Public Libraries’ Construction Updates


Inman Library Ground Breaking, Thursday, August 19 at 10:00 a.m.
Inman Library Ground Breaking, Thursday, August 19


Thank you for visiting our construction updates page. Please check back often for updates and email news@infodepot.org with any questions or concerns.

Spartanburg County Council and the Libraries’ Board of Trustees are committed to providing a first-class infrastructure to meet the informational, educational, and entertainment needs of Spartanburg County. Further, it is their commitment to utilize Spartanburg’s tax revenue wisely and strategically.

Back in 2000, County Council authorized $9 million in construction bonds to build the Chesnee, Cowpens, Cyrill-Westside, Landrum, and Woodruff Libraries. The last payment on this debt was paid in January 2020.

Instead of requesting additional taxes to address library infrastructure the Board of Trustees requested the debt issued in 2000 to be reissued after the final payment was made. This strategy would not increase taxes and would provide the necessary capital to improve library services.

The Libraries’ Board of Trustees identified the Inman Library and improvements to the Headquarters Library as two essential priorities.

Inman's beginning can be traced back to 1876, and its development can largely be credited to: textile mills, springs and railroads. A local landowner William Gowan originally heard of a plan to build a rail line through the area northwest of the city of Spartanburg, which at the time was only populated by scattered farmhouses, and donated land free of charge for a depot.

The depot was eventually named for John Hamilton Inman, a railroad executive of the day, and a small retail district sprang up around it. In 1901, the town began a new phase in its history when James A. Chapman and his family organized Inman Mills. By 1934, it was one of the largest textile plants in the county.

In 1948 a collection of books was donated to start a branch library, which was housed in the lobby of the Inman town hall. The town hall also housed the town jail which prompted a “Let’s Get Library Out of Jail” initiative and the collection moved to another location on Bishop Street. This location suffered from inadequate quarters, staffing and materials and closed in 1971. Inman was without a library for several years until through renewed community interest the branch reopened again in the town hall in 1979 in an 1100 square foot space. The library moved into a permanent location on Mill Street in 1992 and has served the community in its current location for the past 29 years.


Inman Library - Regular attendees of the Inman Library’s story hour break ground on the new building on July 15, 1990. Shown from left to right are Shawn Skelton, Sonya Skelton, Richard Holt, Bart Copeland, Erin Griffin, Kirsten Jolley, Merri Grace Spencer, and Caleb Spencer.
Regular attendees of the Inman Library’s story hour break ground on the new building on July 15, 1990. Shown from left to right are Shawn Skelton, Sonya Skelton, Richard Holt, Bart Copeland, Erin Griffin, Kirsten Jolley, Merri Grace Spencer, and Caleb Spencer


Inman Library - Prior to constructing a separate building, the Inman Library used part of the Inman Town Hall, shown here in 1985.
Prior to constructing a separate building, the Inman Library used part of the Inman Town Hall, shown here in 1985.

The Inman Library, located at 50 Mill Street, was originally designed by Hollis-Crocker Architects in 1991. In early 2020, it was demolished to make room for a new Inman Library. Prior to the demolition, the Inman Library had served the Inman community for 28 years well before the development of computer-based resources, the popularization of the internet, growth in library programming, and the expansion of physical collections

The Inman Library serves as a destination for the community, so the Board of Trustees had decided to keep the new library at its current location. Current plans included removing the existing library structure, which was completed in early 2020, and building a new facility. Money will be saved over the long-term by doing this. The new Inman Library will be about 11,900 square feet in size. By building a new facility we can allow for efficiencies that will save costs on utilities, staffing, and maintenance while providing space for essential and growing library services.

Staff had worked within Inman’s existing footprint and square footage for years. They were very creative to make the space work, but the Inman Library was previously only 7,700 square feet and was therefore sorely undersized. In 1991, library programming was limited to a weekly story time. In today’s environment, programs span from toddlers to school aged children, tweens, teens and adults. Exercise, special interest and educational programming fill in the gaps. Programming was up nearly 600% since the Inman Library opened in 1991. In short, the Inman Library was too small.

At this point, all design work has been completed on this project and we have identified a contractor. Plans have been submitted to the Spartanburg County planning department for review and permitting. Our pre-construction estimator is continuing to check and make certain that we will keep all costs within our budget.

The processes we put in place in response to COVID created barriers and inhibited progress with regards to this project. Currently, construction prices have skyrocketed. The cost of steel alone has tripled. Steel production is 6-8 months behind, and lumber, especially joists, is becoming scarce. In spite of this, we continue to push forward with this project and hope to follow the timeline listed below as we move ahead.

The Inman Library will be a valuable asset to the Inman community, and we look forward to being able to share more progress photos as construction begins.

A rendering of the new facility is represented below. Continue to check in for updated photos as construction commences and we look forward to seeing you at the Inman Library and our other branch locations soon.


Inman Library - Rendering of the new Inman Library
Rendering of the new Inman Library

*Project update as of June 3, 2021.

The supply chain is slowing things down. We learned about 10 days ago that Amazon has purchased 75% of the available steel for the type of beams we need for Inman. This leaves 25% for all the other projects within the US. Apparently, Amazon is building massive distribution centers.

We were given two choices:

  1. 1. Wait for the type of steel specified for Inman (the type used by Amazon) but wait until March 2022 for availability with NO guarantee.
  2. 2. Have the engineers redesign the roof structure with a different type of steel beam. The redesign increases design fees and material costs but shortens the wait time from March 2022 to November 2021.

We have chosen the second option. Engineers are wrapping up the new roofing design and cost estimate. This may push our project costs higher but will keep construction progressing.

Beginning Tuesday, June 15 the Bookmobile will begin visiting the Inman Fire Department on Tuesdays and Fridays.



Inman Library Timeline

*Project update as of May 14.

Completed:

Interior layout and adjacent spaces

Exterior design

Stormwater control design


In process:

Building construction plan review

Civil engineering plan review

*These reviews will provide the permits for us to begin as outlined below.


Next steps (contingent on permitting):

Budget finalization: May 19

Grading and site prep begins: June/July (*based on the completion of the plan review, permitting, and weather)

Building construction begins: August 1 – August 15 (*based on the completion of the plan review, permitting, and weather)

Inman Library Groundbreaking: Thursday, August 19 at 10 a.m.

Construction completion: May 2022

The Spartanburg County Public Libraries has a large infrastructure. Maintaining existing locations is important to the overall health of our system. The Board of Trustees of the Spartanburg County Public Libraries appreciates you and your patronage as well as the trust that County Council places in both them and Library staff.

Please continue to check back for more updates as plans develop and we look forward to seeing you at the libraries.