Library Commons

An artist rendering of the Library Commons project.

MOUNT VERNON — Mount Vernon’s planned Library Commons project has caught the eye of Gov. Jay Inslee because of its environment-conscious design.

In his proposed 2022 supplemental budget, Inlsee included $4 million for the $46 million project.

Once completed, the Library Commons will include a new library, a 277-car parking garage and a community center in a single facility in downtown Mount Vernon.

In a climate policy brief released Monday, Inslee said this project would double the number of public electric vehicle charging stations along the Interstate 5 corridor between Seattle and Vancouver, B.C.

At a Mount Vernon City Council meeting Wednesday, Mayor Jill Boudreau said the endorsement from Inslee is important for the project.

“It just means we’re the example for the state on how to do what he’s looking to do,” she said.

In addition to the 76 electric vehicle charging stations, the Library Commons project will rely on renewable electricity and will use energy-efficient materials to reduce the overall carbon footprint, according to Julie Blazek, a partner at project designer HKP Architects.

The $4 million allocation is part of a $626.5 million proposal from Inslee’s office to invest in decarbonizing the construction process, bolstering electric vehicle infrastructure and building up the production of clean electricity.

Boudreau said at the council meeting that the city has secured about $33 million in grants and bonds, leaving about $13 million still to find.

She said she anticipates the governor’s endorsement will make the project more attractive to federal grants, which the city will apply for next year.

Whether the $4 million allocation is granted depends on the whether the supplemental budget is passed. Legislators will work on the budget during the 2022 legislative session, which is set to start Jan. 10.

— Reporter Brandon Stone: bstone@skagitpublishing.com, 360-416-2112, Twitter: @Brandon_SVH

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