Appleton Public Library Usage in Decline / by Tom Roessler

Below are some facts that every Appleton resident should know about the Appleton Public library. After reviewing this post consider contacting your alderperson, preferably by phone (a link can be found on the “Resource” tab of this website). Ask your alderperson if he/she plans to support the library expansion when Appleton and statewide library use is in decline.

Total Circulation for the APL (Appleton Public Library) has decreased 35% from 2009 to 2017. 1

Library Visits at the APL have decreased 21% from 2009 to 2017. 1

Printed books owned by the APL have decreased 21% from 2009 to 2017. 1

E-books available at the APL have increased 1567% from 2004 to 2017. 1

Uses of Public Internet computers at the APL has decreased 64% from 2009 to 2017. 1

State wide library usage has declined mirroring the decline at the APL.2

Condition of the current library- A 2009 engineering study described the condition of the current APL as excellent.  A subsequent 2014 engineering study reaffirmed that the library was in excellent condition. 3

Expansion of the current library- A 2008 study found that 12,000 square feet could be added to the current library by adding a second floor to the east wing of the APL. 4

Engineering Study– A $12,000 engineering studyis needed to determine the feasibility of adding square footage to the second floor of the APL.  A request was made to the council in August of this year however the funds have still not been authorized. 5

Cost of the project and who will pay for it– Appleton residents will bear the entire cost of library project.  It is estimated the cost of the new library will be $30 million. 6

The data for this calculation can be found at the following website:

A summary of statewide library trends can be found at this website:

Final Building assessment report, August 20, 2014 completed by Harwood Engineering Consultants.

2008 study completed by Durrant and Himmel Wilson

August 9, 2018 proposal submitted by Larson Engineering Incorporated, Appleton, WI.

APC article November 8, 2018.