Water-damaged Burton Barr Central Library in Phoenix to stay closed until June 2018

- Phoenix's main public library won't reopen until next June, nearly a year after it was heavily damaged by water from a corroded fire-sprinkler pipe that burst during a July monsoon storm.

The library has been closed since the July 15 storm damaged the 25-year-old building's roof above the fifth-floor fire suppression system.



City Manager Ed Zuercher also says inspection reports from recent years warned of pipe corrosion but that those reports weren't shown to top officials.

"Some employees were notified of problems with the sprinkler system as much as three years ago and did not act to bring it to light or act on it," said Zuercher. "That is a big problem."

Now the roof will have to be replaced, along with extensive repairs throughout the building. It's not going to be cheap.

"Early calculations estimate total cost to be between $6 million and $8 million," said Zuercher.

The city manager promises to get to the bottom of who messed up. He says the city will also check every building used by the public to make sure the same mistake isn't repeated somewhere else.

Meanwhile, there are 16 other libraries around the city that will stay open while repairs continue.

The Associated Press (AP) contributed to this report.

Up Next:


  • Popular

  • Recent

Stories You May Be Interested In – includes Advertiser Stories