The landmark Shaws department store on Portlaoise main street is to be completely demolished to make way for the new county library.
Plans are now on display as part of the PartVIII public consultation stage of the project, which will see a state-of-the-art new library replacing the vacant shop, once the cornerstone of Portlaoise main street.
The cost has risen from an initial €3.2million €5 million, including the €450k price of Laois County Council buying the building from Shaws in 2013.
The cost will be met partly with a government grant, and partly through local funding including rates.
The new building, designed by Portlaoise architects McCarthy O Hora, will include a Local Studies Centre, Community and Events spaces.
“The new Part 3 storey /Part 2 storey building will provide library space of 1,500 square metres approximately, comprising of a ground floor space of 800 square metres and upper floors space of 700 square metres. Additional space from the rear will be incorporated for library events and exhibitions, including a reading garden which will facilitate exhibitions and cultural festivals,” the council states.
Plans and particulars of the proposals are available for inspection until Thursday June 22, at the Planning Department, Laois County Council, and at Portlaoise library.
Submissions can be made in writing on Portlaoise Library Project to the council by July 7
The library is expected to open in 2019, with no use yet decided on the old library above shops in Lyster square.