Former Teen Center Discussed February 6

Community Meeting held February 6 on Former Teen Center
Posted on 01/29/2019
Former Teen Center Building

The Arlington Heights Memorial Library and the Village of Arlington Heights will be discussing the future of the former Teen Center, 112. N. Belmont Ave., at 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday, February 6 in the Buechner Room of Village Hall, 33 S. Arlington Heights Road.

The building has 8,000 square feet of space on two floors. It is fully accessible (with elevator) and is located across from Recreation Park at the corner of Belmont and Miner.  The property is currently owned by the Village.

The community meeting on February 6 will provide residents the opportunity to learn more about the Library's potential project at the site, ask questions and provide feedback. Click here to view the public notice regarding the meeting.

The Village purchased the property in 1994 to run as a Teen Center, which ceased operation in 2010.  From 2011 - 2017, the building was leased to another entity for the purpose of a Teen Center. After the tenant left, the Village explored interest in the former Teen Center as it was no longer needed for core Village services. A neighborhood meeting was also held where a majority of those attending expressed a desire to see the existing building retained and re-used.  

Last year, the library expressed its interest to the Village in transferring ownership of the building. Part of the Village’s process in the sale or transfer of real estate involves checking with other Village government organizations to see if they are interested in purchasing the property. 

The building was the first stand-alone library in Arlington Heights. Given the library’s history with the building and the desire to add a makerspace as noted in the library’s 2019-2022 strategic plan, the library is exploring the possibility of acquiring the property with an agreement that would benefit the community through contributions from both the Village and the library. Terms of the agreement are being discussed.

The library is considering the building to house a makerspace that would offer opportunities for hands-on experiential STEAM (science, technology, engineering, art and mathematics) learning for all ages, with technology and creative equipment and supplies for use. Makerspaces typically offer tools such as laser cutters, 3D printers, embroidery, quilting and sewing machines, and computers for coding and programming small robots. The makerspace would allow people to use equipment they may not have the resources or space to own.

Other communities with library makerspaces include: Wheeling, Elk Grove, Northbrook, Barrington, Elmhurst, Naperville, Winnetka, Lake Zurich, Aurora, Algonquin and Grayslake.