Austin History Center

Austin Libraries for the Future Task Force Records

An Inventory

Overview of the Collection

Creator: Austin Libraries for the Future Task Force
Title: Austin Libraries for the Future Task Force Records
Inclusive Dates: 1996-2002
Bulk Dates: 2000-2002
Abstract: The Austin Libraries for the Future (ALFF) Task Force was created in early 2000 to evaluate the City of Austin's library system and to make recommendations for the future. The materials date from 1996 to 2002 and include various plans, reports, and studies by the task force and its committees and subcommittees. Also included are meeting minutes and agendas, correspondence between members of the task force, and budgets and recommended funding for the Austin Public Libraries.
Identification: AR.2013.030
Quantity: 2.2 linear feet (6 boxes)
Location Archives Stacks
Language: The records are in English.
Repository: Austin History Center, Austin Public Library, 810 Guadalupe, PO BOX 2287, Austin, TX 78768

Administrative History

The genesis of the Austin Libraries for the Future Task Force (ALFF) was an unsuccessful effort to include bond funding for a new Central Library on a citywide bond election in 1998. To the surprise of many people, there was opposition to the city manager's bond-funding proposal from advocates for some of the city's branch libraries. The mayor and leaders of the city's library-oriented support groups (i.e., The Friends of the Austin Public Library, the Austin Public Library Foundation, the Friends of the Austin History Center, and the Library Commission) decided to create a task force that would evaluate the existing city library system and make recommendations for the future.

The Task Force was created in early 2000, and most of its work as a task force took place between January and September of that year. Funding came primarily from "Libraries for the Future," a national-support organization for public libraries. All four of the library-oriented support groups were represented on the task force, and other interested citizens and library staff also participated. The task force conducted public hearings, phone surveys, on-site user surveys at libraries, and interviews with key community leaders, and it hired a facilitator and utilized support services from the Austin Public Library staff.

In September 2000, the Task Force delivered to the mayor and the city council its report, which included an assessment of existing facilities and funding, a vision statement and set of goals for the future, "benchmarks" for evaluation of success, and recommended next steps. The city council accepted the report and, on December 14, 2000, voted to adopt the report as a blueprint for the city's library policies. The report was also approved and joined by all of the library groups and most of the community advocates for the public-library system. The Friends of the Austin History Center took a particularly active role in framing the report and recommendations.

During 2001, there was additional work performed on a comprehensive "facilities study" that had been recommended by the task force, which lead to a conclusion and recommendation that a major, centrally located downtown library should be a primary goal of the city. Although advocates had urged an earlier vote, bond funds for a new central library were placed on the ballot in 2006 and approved by the voters. The new library, which will be on the former site of the Green Water Treatment Plant, will be one of the results of the task force's work.

Scope and Contents

The collection is comprised of materials that were collected by and that relate to the work of the Austin Libraries for the Future Task Force.

The Austin Public Libraries series (1996-2002) includes a system overview and a strategic plan for the Austin Public Libraries, as well as brochures and public-relations materials distributed by the Austin Public Libraries and information regarding other public libraries around the country.

The Budgets series (1998-2002) includes budgets and recommended funding for the Austin Public Libraries.

The Committees series (2000-2001) includes materials on and collected by several committees and subcommittees of the ALFF Task Force.

The Correspondence series (2000-2002) includes two volumes of bound correspondence, as well as assorted correspondence, between members of the task force. Most of the correspondence is emails, along with a few faxes.

The Meetings series (2000-2001) includes meeting minutes and agendas of various committees and subcommittees of the task force, as well as materials collected in preparation for those meetings.

The Plans, Reports, and Studies series (2000-2002) includes drafts and final versions of various plans, reports, and studies generated by the task force and its committees and subcommittees, such as task-force reports, a director's report, implementation plans and projects, staff survey results, and status reports.

The Questions, Comments, and Input series (2000) includes comments from task-force members on drafts of the task force's final report, as well as interviews with local leaders regarding their thoughts on libraries and library usage.

The Seaholm series (1998-2001) concerns the Seaholm district of Austin, which is the site for the proposed new central library. Included is correspondence regarding redevelopment in the district and a "master plan" map, created by the ROMA design group, for the district.

The Assorted series (1997-2001) includes various materials, such as handwritten notes, business cards, a "community scorecard" report from 1997, and blank envelopes and sheets of paper with ALFF letterhead, collected by the donor in the course of his service on the ALFF task force.


The collection is arranged into 9 series:
I. Austin Public Libraries
II. Budgets
III. Committees
IV. Correspondence
V. Meetings
VI. Plans, Reports, and Studies
VII. Questions, Comments, and Input
VIII. Seaholm
IX. Assorted


Restrictions on Access

Open to all users.

Restrictions on Use

The Austin History Center (AHC) is the owner of the physical materials in the AHC collections and makes available reproductions for research, publication, and other uses. Written permission must be obtained from the AHC before any publication use. The AHC does not necessarily hold copyright to all of the materials in the collections. In some cases, permission for use may require seeking additional authorization from the copyright owners. Consult repository for more details.

Index Terms

This record series is indexed under the following controlled access subject terms.
Cousar, Jim.
Edward, Deborah.
Austin History Center.
Austin Libraries for the Future Task Force.
Austin Public Library.
Austin (Tex.)
Libraries and community.
Library planning--Texas--Austin.
Document Types:
Business Records.
Handwritten Notes.
Marketing Materials.
Meeting Minutes and Agendas.
Newspaper Clippings.
Printed Materials.
Promotional Materials.
Publicity Materials.

Related Material

Austin Files

  • AF Austin History Center L2710
  • AF Austin Libraries for the Future Task Force L2710
  • AF Austin Public Library Foundation L2710
  • AF Friends of the Austin Public Library L2710
  • AF Libraries - Austin Public L2710

General Collection

  • A 027.476431 LA Lake Flato, Sheply Bulfinch. City of Austin New Central Library, Architectural Building Program. 2012.
  • A 027.476431 NE Austin (Tex). Library Dept. A New Central Library for Austin. 2004.
  • A 353.73 AU Austin Libraries for the Future. Task Force Status Report. 2000.
  • A 353.73 AU Austin Libraries for the Future (Organization). Task Force Report. 2000.

Separated Material

Included in the collection were 2 copies of "Austin Libraries for the Future Task Force Report," September 2000, and 1 copy of "Austin Libraries for the Future Task Force Status Report," October 2001. Because both items are in the Austin History Center's general collection (A 353.73 AU), the copies in this collection were deaccessioned.

Administrative Information

Custodial History

The collection was donated by a member of the ALFF Task Force.

Preferred Citation

Austin Libraries for the Future Task Force Records (AR.2013.030). Austin History Center, Austin Public Library, Texas.

Acquisition Information

Donor #: DO/2009/060

Donation Date: 2013

Processing Information

Processing and finding aid created by Roger Simon, December 2013. Encoded by Roger Simon.

Detailed Description of the Collection

Austin Public Libraries, 1996-2002, undated

Box Folder
1 1 APL System Overview, 2000, undated
2 APL 2000 Strategic Plan, 1996
3 Information on other libraries, 2000, undated
4 Library resources, 1996-1999, undated
5 Assorted Austin Public Libraries materials, 2000-2002, undated

Budgets, 1998-2002, undated

Box Folder
1 6 1999-2000 Library budget, 1998-2000
7 2000-2001 budget, 2000
8 2002 budget, 2001-2002, undated

Committees, 2000-2001, undated

Box Folder
1 9 Facilities subcommittee, 2000-2001, undated
10 Facilities committee, 2001
11 Marketing and Public Relations subcommittee, 2000, undated
12 Subcommittees, undated

Correspondence, 2000-2002, undated

Box Folder
1 13 Bound correspondence, 2000
14 Bound correspondence II, 2001-2002
Box Folder
2 1 Assorted correspondence, 2000
2-3 Assorted correspondence, 2001
4 Assorted correspondence, 2002, undated

Meetings, 2000-2001

Box Folder
2 5 First meeting 01/26/00, 2000
6 Meetings of 02/09/00 and 02/16/00, 2000
7 03/22/00 Retreat, 2000
8 04/26/00 Meeting, 2000
9 05/17/00 and 05/18/00 Schedule: KLRU and meetings, 2000
10 05/25/00 Steering Committee meeting, 2000
11 05/26/00 Steering Committee, 2000
12 06/14/00 Meeting, 2000
13 06/14/00 Facilities Committee, 2000
14 06/21/00 Task Force Meeting, 2000
15 06/21/00 Facilities Subcommittee meeting, 2000
16 08/02/00 Steering Committee, 2000
Box Folder
3 1 08/16/00 meeting, 2000
2 09/15/00 and 09/20/00 meetings, 2000
3 12/19/00 meeting, 2000
4 02/20/01 ALFF II meeting, 2001
5 03/21/01 Public Hearing for Austin Public Library, 2001
6 03/22/01 meeting, 2001
7 April 10 & April 12 meetings, 2001
8 June 12, 2001 meeting in San Antonio, Texas, 2001
9 August meetings, 2001
10 Assorted meeting materials, 2000
11 Assorted meeting materials, 2001

Plans, Reports, & Studies, 2000-2002

Box Folder
4 1 July 2, 2000 Draft Report with JEC edits, 2000
2 RFQ package for Facilities Study, 2000
3-4 Assorted reports and report drafts, 2000
5-6 Assorted reports and report drafts, 2001
Box Folder
5 1 Assorted reports and report drafts, 2002

Questions, Comments, & Input, 2000, undated

Box Folder
5 2 July comments on Final Report draft, 2000
3 Consultant comments, 2000
4 Internal questionnaire 01/31/00, 2000
5 JEC confidential 05/24/00 report to Mayor, 2000
6 Key Voices interview scheduling, 2000, undated
7 Library Task Force 'Key Voice' interviews," 2000, undated
8 Question and answer on Austin History Center, 2000
9 Stakeholder input, 2000, undated
10 Assorted questions, comments, and input, 2000, undated

Seaholm, 1998-2001, undated

Box Folder
5 11 Siting, 2000, undated
12 ALFF/ROMA Group, 2001, undated
13 Assorted Seaholm materials, 1998-2000, undated
14 Assorted Seaholm materials, 2000, undated

Assorted, 1998-2001, undated

Box Folder
6 1 Arts Center Stage, 2000
2 February 2001, 2001
3 Miscellaneous, 1999-2000, undated
4 Assorted documents, 1997-2001, undated