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What's New

2011-2012 Statistics

Total patrons registered 92,955
Total items in collection 619,033
Total items circulated (includes 64,537 WV Deli downloadable items) 1,104,040
Patron visits to libraries 831,049
Items requested by other libraries from KCPL through interlibrary loan 1,118
Directional, informational and reference questions answered 224,623
Number of computer sessions 224,834
Number of children's and family programs conducted 2,367
Number of users attending children's and family programs 47,262
Number of adult and young adult programs conducted 1,243
Number of users attending adult and young adult programs 20,238
Number of people using public meeting rooms 7,652
Number of volunteer hours provided by teens 2,271
Number of volunteer hours provided by adults 2,508
Number of user sessions in premium databases approximately 25,000 per year
Number of active users on KCPL Facebook page approximately 1,300 per month
Number of website pages used approximately 1,400,000 per year
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Kindle is Here!

West Virginia Deli Browse Kindle® titles. back to page menu

You can now download e-books from WVDeli for your Kindle following these easy steps:

  1. Check out an e-book using your library card and PIN number. (If you don’t know your PIN number call the library for assistance.)
  2. Click on "Get for Kindle." You will then be directed to the site.
  3. Log on to your Amazon account.
  4. Click on "Get library book."
  5. Deliver to your Kindle.

For additional help call 304-343-4646, ext. 221 or email us at

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Study touts value of library building projects, services

exterior of proposed library building design

Download the full study (pdf)

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Kanawha County Public Library construction projects will produce an additional $18 million in economic activity and create 667 jobs in Kanawha County while underway, a study by Marshall University concludes.

The study was conducted to determine the economic return to Kanawha County of proposed construction projects and of services provided by the library. Results were released at a meeting of the KCPL Board of Directors and The Library Foundation of Kanawha County on May 9.

The report, prepared by Marshall's Center for Business and Economic Research (CBER), also found that once completed, the new and renovated library facilities are expected to pump an additional $4.1 million into Kanawha County's economy each year. KCPL is the largest public library system in West Virginia with 10 locations and a mobile library serving more than 180,000 county residents and more than 89,000 registered borrowers.

The library has been pursuing funding to build a new Main Library in Charleston, new branches in Elkview and Marmet, and additions and renovations to facilities in Cross Lanes, Dunbar, St. Albans and Sissonville. The total cost of the projects was originally estimated at $50 million, including $10 million for land and $40 million for construction, furnishings and equipment. That amount was reduced to approximately $47 million when library officials elected to enter into a long-term lease on a building in The Crossings Shopping Center in Elkview, rather than constructing a new branch building. Construction on the leased mall facility is well underway, and the library hopes to be in it and operating this summer.

"We wanted the community and community leaders to know how much the library projects will help the economy. The library doesn't just provide great service, it's a huge contributor to the economy and quality of life in Kanawha County" said Library Foundation President Tom Heywood. "We always knew that, but now we have the data to back it up."

Dr. Cal Kent, vice president of CBER and principal investigator on the project, said the study was conducted using Economic Value Analysis.

"EVA asks what would people be willing to pay for library services if they were not provided at low or no cost, as well as what are the output, income, jobs and taxes generated by the library," Kent said.

The study took a very conservative approach to the economic values attributed to library service. KCPL Director Alan Engelbert said the study showed conclusively that library service is a terrific value, that construction of library facilities will generate substantial economic activity both initially and after construction, and that KCPL facilities are destinations and key contributors to economic vitality and the quality of life in their communities. Last year there were more than 855,000 visits to library facilities and KCPL offered 1,525 programs for children, young adults and families, reaching more than 25,500 people. Use of electronic services has exploded as well, with almost 1.3 million web pages delivered to patrons from the library's website in the last year.

Library Board President Mike Albert pointed out that the CBER study shows the library returned $2.24 in service for every dollar spent and library users estimated their households saved an average of $90.25 per month by using the library for books, films, meeting space and programs for all ages.

Kent and research associate Emily Hagan said they were hoping to get 400 responses to the survey but actually received more than 3,500 responses and many positive comments, which they view as further evidence of the value of the library. Very few negative comments were listed. Lack of parking at the downtown facility was the most common.

The study was commissioned by the library and its foundation, and was supported by a grant of federal Library Services and Technology Act funds from the U.S. Institute for Museum and Library Services, administered by the West Virginia Library Commission. A copy of the study called "Economic Impacts and Valuation Associated with the Construction and Operation of New and Renovated Kanawha County Public Library Facilities" is available at

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Special Programs & Events

Open a Modern Classic

Open a Modern Classic Capital Campaign

Open a Modern Classic is an informational and fund-raising campaign related to our proposed building projects.

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West Virginia Book Festival

West Virginia Book Festival

Each fall the West Virginia Book Festival is held at the Charleston Civic Center. The two-day event is presented by Kanawha County Public Library, The Library Foundation of Kanawha County, Inc., the Charleston Gazette, Charleston Daily Mail, and the West Virginia Humanities Council.

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Used Book Sales

KCPL supplements its revenues with an ongoing used book sale.

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