The Clapp Memorial Library is a significant structure within the National Register Belchertown Center Historic District. Completed in 1887, the Richardsonian Romanesque building, designed by Henry Franklin Kilburn, is a bequest to the town of Belchertown by John Francis Clapp, successful NYC merchant and native son.
A private entity, the library is governed by a Board of Trustees who actively advocate for library resources. Recognizing that, while the building itself is a significant asset, its specialized upkeep is a drain on financial resources that could be directed to library programs and facilities, the Board of Trustees contracted with CME Architecture, Inc. in December of 2014 to perform a detailed conditions assessment. The purpose of the assessment along with treatment recommendations and a prioritized preservation plan is to identify the requirements and associated costs to preserve and maintain the building.
The CME team consisted of a historical architect, structural engineer, mechanical and electrical engineers, preservation consultant, and stained glass specialist each of whom surveyed the property to assess existing conditions in a noninvasive manner. The findings of these studies are presented in the body of this report as well as in the Appendices.
The following document includes a prioritized plan for implementation of historically appropriate treatments and the development of systems for code compliance. Design and construction budget costs were developed, reflecting the prioritized plan of action, totaling $503,000 over the course of the next 10 years. A cyclical maintenance plan developed specifically for the library will assist the Board of Trustees in maintaining the building and the investment in preserving this significant and beloved community asset.