HUMAN faces will again officially help visitors to Wodonga with a volunteer tourist information point to be part of the city's new library.
Mayor Anna Speedie announced the step yesterday at the same time she flagged the location for a temporary library while Wodonga's new $10.2 million library and gallery is built.
Under the latest plan, the main reception area of the new library building will be staffed by volunteers as part of what the council calls a "visitor servicing point".
"The library already offers public computers people can use to book activities and accommodation or find out more and this development is the ideal opportunity to trial having a tourism ambassador there to assist people that visit the precinct," Cr Speedie said.
Wodonga Ratepayers' Association president Ian Deegan and his group, who have long criticised the council's unwillingness to have a personal tourism service, welcomed the new move.
"It's good to see they're finally listening to the people and they've got a place where visitors can go," Mr Deegan said.
He hopes it will be complemented by signage at the entrances to Wodonga directing visitors to the library.
"I would also hope we have pamphlets of other cities handy and we can send out ours in response to them," Mr Deegan said.
Cr Speedie said it was anticipated more visitors would descend on the area once the library-gallery was complete in late 2020 or early 2021.
"Our feasibility study projects an increase of 10,000 day and overnight visitors coming through the new space in the first year alone," she said.
Meanwhile, the library will be housed in two former shops at the Water Tower end of High Street while construction occurs.
An existing council shopfront next to the post office and adjoining former sports store will become home to the library in spring.
The shopfront will no longer be needed as works on the reception area of the council's Hovell Street headquarters are expected to be complete by that time.
The other shop was home to Wodonga's only sports store until January.
The stopgap library will have computers and a reduced number of books due to space restraints.
It will be the first time since 1982 that Wodonga's library has been in High Street.
It was then that it was relocated from what is now Middleton's carpets at the northern end of High Street to its present site in the civic precinct opposite Woodland Grove.