The East Baton Rouge Library Board is getting ready to launch its search for a commercial properties broker to find a location for its proposed South Branch location.
The board voted last month to contract with a broker after years of looking for a library site on its own. The 15,000-square-foot South Branch was originally proposed to be built at developer J.T. “Tommy” Spinosa’s Rouzan development, but the board withdrew from that agreement in 2013, citing a lack of construction progress.
Library Director Spencer Watts told the board May 21 that he wants to advertise for a broker soon and begin an interview process, which may take three to four weeks.
“We want somebody with a good understanding of traffic patterns and how people operate,” he said. “It’s important for us that we fit in people’s routines as they move around the community.”
The broker will have 90 days to find a suitable property for the library. If the agent doesn’t meet that deadline, the matter will be revisited for a possible 180-day extension.
The board’s in-house search for a South Branch location had proved exhausting, so it will be “nice to have someone who does this all time,” Watts said.
When the idea first came up last month, Watts said, five or six agents contacted him, but they offered tracts outside the library’s service area or too close to existing locations.
“We have not systemically worked with anybody” yet, Watts said.