Agoura Hills has accepted a 6-acre land donation for a new library and community center, city officials said Thursday.
Construction of a 25,000-square-foot library is expected to begin in two years on the property, a hill near an office park on Canwood Street east of Kanan Road, Mayor Darlene McBane said.
The land was donated by longtime Agoura-area landowner Patricia Kanan in exchange for the city's promise to name the facility the Kanan Family Library, McBane said. One room will be named for Patricia Kanan and one for her late sister, Judy, who was fatally shot in 1985. The case has never been solved.
The city estimated last year that building a library would cost about $5 million. But that estimate will have to be revised upward because the site is on a hill that will have to be graded partially, said Vince Mastrosimone, the city's public works director. It will be financed with municipal bonds, he said.
A 13,000- to 17,000-square-foot community center is also planned. But that facility would probably be built after the library, and no financing plan has been developed, Mastrosimone said.
The Kanan land donation is the latest development in a sometimes controversial search for a library site. The City Council had planned to build a library in Chumash Park last year, but residents were opposed. When McBane suggested Forest Cove Park, residents protested and hanged McBane in effigy.
Now McBane is among four of the city's council members facing a petition drive to hold a recall election. David Chagall, a leader in the recall effort, labeled the latest library site "a terribly irresponsible idea." Its location on a hill will require excessive grading and will result in a smaller building than could have been built on a flat piece of land, he said.
McBane countered that the library will have a wondrous view of Ladyface Mountain and will be "the crown jewel of libraries in Los Angeles County."