Shoreline Branch Library

345 NorthEast 175th
Seattle, WA 98155


The Richmond Highlands Library, opened in 1944 in a building at the corner of North 185th Street and Aurora Avenue North, was the first library in the Shoreline area. The Ronald Council of Parents and Teachers and the Volunteer Firemen's Association sponsored it. In 1946, the library moved to a new location on North 183rd Street between Aurora Avenue North and Linden Avenue North.

The Richmond Highlands Association was formed in 1947 for the purpose of providing library facilities. Property was leased from the Ronald Methodist Church at North 178th Street and Linden Avenue North and a 450 square foot war surplus building from Paine Field was moved there to serve as a library.

By 1960, a new library was needed to serve the growing community of 20,000 residents. The Shoreline Library Guild was established and $42,000 was raised for a new library. Though the amount was short of the $90,000 goal the property where the library now stands was purchased for $6,100 and construction began.

A Local Improvement District was established to help fund the building project, then construction was halted when in 1965, state courts declared the Local Improvement District unconstitutional. Later that year, federal funds became available for Library Service and Construction. In order to receive these funds the land and building had to be given to the King County Library District, and construction of the Shoreline Library was completed in 1966.

By the early 1970s, the community again needed a larger library. In 1974, operations were transferred to a church and in 1975 an expanded 15,000 square foot library was opened.

The King County Library District's 1988 bond issue identified Shoreline as an area where additional library services were needed. In 1991, property adjacent to the library was acquired, an architect was selected and plans were developed for a one story library and additional parking. The library moved to temporary quarters on 15th Avenue Northeast for one year in order to continue library service in the community. The former building was demolished and construction began in 1992 and the current 20,000 square foot building opened in September 1993.

The new library has accommodated rapid change and dynamic growth for ten years, undergoing two mini-renovations and a change in management and catalog systems most recently.

After the incorporation of the City of Shoreline in 1995, the Shoreline Library Board was formed by the City Council in the spring of 1996 to act as a liaison to the King County Library System Board of Trustees the City Council, and the citizens of Shoreline. It provides information, makes recommendations relating to the Shoreline and Richmond Beach Libraries, promotes programs and reviews library policies. The Library Board consists of five members from whom a chair and vice chair are elected annually.
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