Off the Shelf: Behind the scenes of the Sequim Library move

As the North Olympic Library System (NOLS) prepares for construction to begin on the Sequim Library Expansion and Renovation project in spring 2024, there’s a lot happening behind the scenes.

Here’s a sneak peek at some of the work happening now:

Temporary location

One of the priorities during construction is maintaining access to library services at a temporary location throughout the project. The project is a complete renovation and expansion of the building, so the current site will be a construction zone.

Before construction begins, the library will move to 609 W. Washington St., next to Fifth Avenue Furniture, in the storefront that was previously Brian’s Sporting Goods.

It’s a large open space with a lot of possibilities, along with some challenges for operating a library. The goal is to make the space functional for library needs for the one-year project, and to keep upgrades to a minimum given the limited duration the Sequim Branch will be located there.

Some essential updates to the temporary space include improving public access and ensuring the restroom meets ADA (American with Disabilities Act) standards.

There is also work underway to provide Wi-Fi access and public computers, which are core services offered by the library. It’s an older building designed prior to the internet when there wasn’t a need to plug in a lot of devices, so library staff are working to create a floor plan that maximizes access to outlets, and works well with shelving layout and seating areas.

The temporary space is larger than the current Sequim Library, so there’s room to bring the entire library collection. It’s a fun puzzle to plan for moving 52,500 books and other library materials. NOLS will be working with a moving company that specializes in moving large office buildings and public libraries. They have large book carts that will be loaded with books in the current building, shrink-wrapped, rolled onto the truck, and unrolled at the temporary space where library staff will shelve the books in their temporary home.

Working with a professional moving company will minimize the time the library is closed during the relocation, allowing the library to get back to offering the services the community depends on, as quickly as possible.

Library staffers anticipate construction will begin in early spring 2024. The City of Sequim has been reviewing building and site permits since earlier this year. Once the permits are approved, the project will go out for construction bids.

Specific library closure and reopening dates will be announced when construction details are confirmed in early 2024.

You can help

NOLS is seeking donations to help support this project. It’s a great way to be a part of something positive happening in our community with a lasting impact.

Gifts of $250 and greater will be recognized by giving level on a donor wall in the renovated library. Donations in honor of friends or family are a meaningful gift. Learn more at

If you’d like to discuss donation options, please contact Executive Director Noah Glaude at or 360-417-8500, x7717.

Emily Sly is the Sequim Library branch manager.