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Telephone: 503-325-7323
450 10th Street
Astoria, OR 97103

HOURS

Monday:9-1pm

Tuesday:9-5pm

Wednesday: 9-5pm

Thursday:9-5pm

Friday: 9-5pm

Saturday:9-1pm

Sunday: Closed

 

Library Director

Suzanne Harold
503-325-7323

Email

Section 106 Public Notice

PUBLIC NOTICE

Regarding the National Endowment for the Humanities’ Section 106 Review of the Astoria Oregon Public Library Renovation

The National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) has offered the Astoria Public Library Foundation, in Astoria, Oregon, a Challenge Infrastructure and Capacity Building grant (CHA-268725) to create a humanities center at their Library. NEH has determined that the proposed renovations to the Library will have an adverse effect under Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act (NHPA) of 1966, as amended, 54 U.S.C. 306108.

NEH is an independent grant-making agency of the United States government dedicated to supporting research, education, preservation, and public programs in the humanities.  This public notice is issued as part of NEH’s responsibilities under 36 C.F.R. Part 800, the regulations which implement Section 106 of the NHPA.  NEH, a funding agency, is required by regulation to identify and assess the effects of any proposed actions on historic properties.  If any proposed action will have an adverse effect on historic resources, NEH works with the appropriate parties to seek ways to avoid, minimize, or mitigate any adverse effects.  Additionally, the Section 106 regulations require NEH to consider the views of the public on preservation issues when making final decisions that affect historic properties.

The City of Astoria Public Library, 450 10th Street, Astoria, Oregon 97103, The Astoria Public Library is individually eligible for inclusion in the National Register of Historic Place under Criterion A and C. Under Criterion A, the civic building is representative of community, state and federal efforts and funding to erect Astoria’s first dedicated building to house the Astoria library collection and serve as a memorial for Clatsop County veterans and has significance in areas of education, social history, and community planning and development.

Under Criterion C, it is an excellent local example of Brutalist architecture and retains character-defining features that evoke its time, design, and method of construction.  The building includes exterior pre-cast concrete wall panels, heavy massing, and minimal adornment. Furthermore, the building is associated with Ebba W. Brown, the first woman to become licensed though examination in Oregon and a prominent Astoria designer. The Astoria Public Library is considered one of the most distinguished buildings completed by her firm.

The rehabilitation project will renovate the building to meet 21st Century library requirements, patron expectations, and community needs, while retaining the building’s modern-era character. The project aims to expand usable square footage within the existing building footprint by better utilizing the existing unfinished basement; reorganize interior spaces to accommodate modern library functions and concerns; the addition of windows in the façade of the building to introduce much needed natural light into the building's interior to create a healthier environment, connect to the surrounding urban context, and improve energy performance. This project will involve minimal ground disturbance. 

On April 30, 2024, NEH received a letter from Ian P. Johnson, M.A., Associate Deputy State Historic Preservation Officer, with the Oregon Heritage/ State Historic Preservation Office, which concurred on the initial Adverse Effect determination. After reviewing Section 106 documentation and SHPO finding, NEH issues a determination of Adverse Effect. NEH, in coordination with the SHPO, the Astoria Oregon Public Library Foundation, the City of Astoria, and other consulting parties will develop a Memorandum of Agreement to avoid, minimize, or mitigate the adverse effect. The following mitigation measures are being considered:

* Oregon State Level Documentation or Historic American Buildings Survey (HABS) Documentation - Photo documentation of the existing building, renovation process and new building added to webpage and Archives.
* Research and document more of the historic of the architect Ebba W. Brown.
* Digital Interpretation - amend the archive’s webpage to include photo documentation above, existing historical drawings of the Library building and architectural history.

Further information regarding the scope, historic properties and determination of adverse effects is included in Enclosures A, B, and C.

As required by Section 106, NEH is providing the public with information about this project, as well as an opportunity to comment on any knowledge of, or concerns with, historic properties in the proposed project area, and issues relating to the project’s potential effects on historic properties. Comments may be submitted to the NEH by e-mail to FPO@neh.govThe deadline for submitting comments is June 6, 2024.

Enclosure A: Section 106 exhibits
Enclosure B: Section 106 documentation form
Enclosure C: Oregon SHPO response letter

Learn more about the Astoria Public Library Renovation.


Search The Catalog


Connect with us

Location & Hours

Telephone: 503-325-7323
450 10th Street
Astoria, OR 97103

HOURS

Monday:9-1pm

Tuesday:9-5pm

Wednesday: 9-5pm

Thursday:9-5pm

Friday: 9-5pm

Saturday:9-1pm

Sunday: Closed

 

Library Director

Suzanne Harold
503-325-7323

Email