Strategic Plan

Photo collage of APL patrons  and artwork with text: APL Strategic Plan

Purpose & Goal of Strategic Plan

The 2019-21 Strategic Plan focuses on our core services and three community focus areas: 

  • Education & skills for life
  • A bridge to information and resources
  • Building community

Library programs and services will be developed with intentionality to ensure that all of our activities deliver outcomes that move the needle in our community priorities.

The Library did a remarkable job of carrying out the recommendations from our 2010 Library Community Plan and transformed itself into a community hub for education, exploration and self-improvement. However, during that same time, the Library’s budget and staffing levels decreased. Our 2019-21 Strategic Plan will help the Library focus our limited resources on what is most important to our community - keeping the Library lean and nimble during times of scarcity, and showing us where to increase during times of abundance.


Over the summer and fall of 2018, the Library’s Strategic Plan Steering Committee spoke with over 500 people in person and received over 1,600 responses to an online survey. The committee heard from a broad range of voices that included teens, seniors, refugees, Millennials, and people with disabilities—ranging in age from 5 to 102.

Participants told us about the most critical issues facing their communities, what changes they see coming in the next five years, and what skills they think individuals and communities will need to thrive as Anchorage changes.

This feedback, paired with community data, helped the Library figure out what is most important to the community that the Library has the skills and resources to support. This led to the creation of three community priority areas: education & skills for life, a bridge to information and resources, and building community.

For more information on our process, refer to the Appendix in the Plan.

Public Input

What do you think of the plan? Please share your thoughts and suggestions.


2010 Library Community Plan

The Library completed a major strategic plan in 2010 guided our direction through 2018. Despite drastic budget cuts through this period, we followed the plan and delivered what the community asked for:

  • Recommendation: Collaborate with community groups to offer a wider range of programs that engage new users and engage people who do not traditionally use the Library.
    Result: Tradition Tuesday, Sensory Storytime, Job Shop, and tons more!

  • Recommendation: Upgrade tech resources.
    Result: increased bandwidth, added iPads, chrome books and laptops for check out.

  • Recommendation: Create a teen center
    Result: created Teen Underground at Loussac Library.

  • Recommendation: Expand and promote foreign language resources.
    Result: working with MOA on a language access plan to provide translations services.

  • Recommendation: Create opportunities for feedback and engagement from users.
    Result: created new website with feedback form and increased two-way communication through our social media.

  • Recommendation: Create an inviting entrance and more engaging learning environments at Loussac.
    Result: Loussac Library entrance renovation.

  • Recommendation: Increase cost-efficiency with automated materials handling and use savings to improve public services.
    Result: conducted LEAN review of our major work flows, added automated materials handling at Loussac and coming soon at Chugiak-Eagle River.

  • Recommendation: Establish a core of partners to address community needs.
    Result: we collaborate closely with Anchorage School District, AK Dept. of Labor, National Science Foundation and hundreds more government, nonprofit and business partners to bring a wide range of services to Library patrons and the community as a whole.

Highlights of the 2010 Library Community Plan