Mississauga Library Named One of Canada's Coolest Branches

A national women’s magazine is hip to what south Sauga residents already know.

The Port Credit Library has recently been named one of Canada’s 15 coolest branches by Chatelaine.

While anyone who lives in the area no doubt knows that the library is great (for both learning and parking), there are probably a lot of facts the average resident doesn’t know.

For example, did you know that the Lakeshore Rd. E. branch is the second oldest library in Mississauga? Believe it or not, the library’s seeds were planted back in 1896.

Here’s how the story goes:

  • It began in October 1896 when a group of citizens of the town met at the new Riverside School to discuss plans for a public library.
  • Back then, the membership fee was 50 cents a year and the library was open six hours a week.
  • Through memberships, donations and a grant from the government the library was able to acquire 500 books by 1898, and the Brampton Conservator reported favourably on the library in the public school by the Credit River.
  • To qualify for the government grant the library had to have at least 100 members … by 1908 there were nearly 200 subscribers and 1,200 books.
  • The library continued to operate in Riverside School but by 1914 there was an increasing need for classroom space.
  • It was forced to temporarily move to the Bowling Club on Park St.
  • The library moved again to a private home opposite the Catholic church.
  • In 1921 the library rented the former Orange Hall on property owned by St. Andrew's Presbyterian Church, which agreed to donate the building to the Village of Port Credit on condition that it be moved off their property where the new church was being built.
  • In 1927 the library was moved again to Stavebank Rd., behind the fire hall, where it remained for almost 30 years.
  • In 1944, the Peel County Library Co-operative was formed and Port Credit became one of 12 small libraries to join.
  • Membership of $25 per year entitled the library to the loan of boxes of mainly new books, which were changed every few months.
  • After the Second World War, the population of Port Credit increased and there was a call for a tax-supported library rather than the association type, and by a vote of the ratepayers in December 1952 it became the Port Credit Public Library.
  • In 1956, the library moved to rented premises at 106 Lakeshore Rd. E.
  • In 1961, plans were made for a new library in Memorial Park.
  • The new building opened on June 7, 1962 with the addition of a spacious auditorium made possible by a grant from Texaco Ltd.
  • In 1974, with the creation of the City of Mississauga from the former Town of Mississauga and the municipalities of Streetsville and Port Credit, the Port Credit Library became a branch of the Mississauga Library System.
  • Renovations took place in 1992.
  • The 2004 Library Master Plan called for the redevelopment of the Port Credit Branch Library, due to age, mechanical lifecycle issues and functionality.
  • It was redeveloped with the Lorne Park and Lakeview branches for about $8M total.
  • The project received Governor General's Medals in Architecture in 2012.

(Source: City of Mississauga)

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