Pratt City library reopening following 2011 tornado damage - Alabamas13.com WVTM-TV Birmingham, AL

Pratt City library reopening following 2011 tornado damage

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PRATT CITY, AL - The Pratt City Branch Library received massive damage in the April 27, 2011 tornado.

After almost three years, the library has been rebuilt and will reopen next Thursday on January 30.

A grand reopening ceremony and reception will be held at 10 a.m.

The new library features a storm shelter with reinforced concrete walls.

"The new building not only has a safe room, but has been strengthened in other ways to withstand high winds,'' said library officials. "The design is not only practical, but also beautiful. The staff looks forward to providing improved services to friends and patrons in Pratt City.''

After the tornado hit and officials assessed the damage, they realized that the library's steel frame was one of the only salvageable parts left of the building.

"During the planning process to rebuild, the City of Birmingham insisted that a storm shelter be incorporated into the new design. The goal was to provide protection from future tornadoes and wind events."

Mayor William A. Bell, Sr., U.S. Rep. Terri Sewell and city council members are scheduled to appear and speak at the reopening ceremony.

Community members are invited to attend.

"Other features include a terrazzo floor marked with major Pratt City landmarks, new study rooms, a business center and youth and teen areas accented with bright and inviting colors. The branch's collection has more than 7, 000 items."

The library is located at the intersection of Dugan Avenue and Hibernian Street.

A video from the Birmingham Public Library's Flickr account that shows the damage after the tornado.
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