Here's the deal:
The Seattle Public Library bought this roving library three years ago to serve the various populations that can't easily get to any of their 25 branches. Day care centers, assisted living facilities and underserved neighborhoods all benefit greatly from this book bus.
But, lo and behold, the bookmobile is up for sale.
How can that be?
Because its too big. Our beloved city of Seattle is pretty near impossible for a car to drive in let alone a book RV, we have so many hills that there only a few places you can drive straight. Why this wasn't apparent 3 years ago when they spent the 400k to buy it is another matter.
Here are the Specs:
2003 Thomas Built (MSV) model 1105N
32' long; 8' wide, 11'4" high
John Deer Power Tech 8.1 liter cng engine (low emissions)
Kohler cng generator
Lift for the Handicapped
It has 5,800 miles on it.
It holds 2,500 books and has a computer workstation.
Asking price: $200,000
There is much talk these days about the need for booksellers to be creative, well here is a perfect opportunity. Surely someone can develop the concept.
Also, if your at the ALA Annual Conference don't miss the Parade of Bookmobiles that will take place on Tuesday, June 26th. The event is hosted by the Office for Literacy and Outreach Services (OLOS).
As part of the festivities The Cleveland Public Library Bookmobile will visit both sides of the Capitol building, and will be open for viewing by members of the House and Senate.
I'm thinking that after the parade ends instead of returning home the bookmobiles should proceed to Jackson County, Oregon where the 15 public libraries have now been closed for 2 1/2 months. Now that would be outreach and talk about an underserved community!
Or maybe when Ron Wyden, the senator from Oregon, gets on the bookmobile at the Capitol he'll commandeer it and head for Jackson County and we can follow it live on Book TV.
Links to the many library bookmobiles
Link to more photos of the Seattle Bookmobile and the Flickr Bookmobile pool where there are lots more SPL Bookmobile photos include some fantastic pictures of the early bookmobiles of the region.
SPL Mobile Services
Previous Book Patrol posts on the Jackson County Library Closures
Thanks to Library Stuff for the lead on the SPL bookmobile