PARIS, Ky., February 6, 2016 — The sun was shining bright on the grand opening of the EOP-designed Paris-Bourbon County Public Library today. Those cutting the ribbon included Mark Adler, library director, Suzanne Rogers, library business manager, Betsy Davenport, library trustee and Pat Wilson, library trustee chair. The project blends the historic 1904 Carnegie Library building with a new, flexible space with abundant natural lighting for increased library programming.
The renovation experienced a few natural disasters that required quick and thoughtful responses. In August 2014, lighting struck the original building during an afternoon thunderstorm. The ensuing fire damaged the roof structure, and the firefighting activity destroyed the original plaster ceiling and wood trim. The ceiling was replaced, and most of the wood trim was salvaged and reinstalled.
The following December brought a gust of wind that tore a freestanding concrete wall from its temporary bracing, crashing it into the 1904 building. Damage included a large hole in the original brick and stone façade and two windows were destroyed. The wall was built back and the damaged brick was salvaged and relaid on the exterior of the building. There was not enough brick to cover the wall on the interior, so wood paneling from the original floor joists covers the wall, with a stone lintel from one of the destroyed windows as an accent.