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3D printing services latest in tech push at Grande Prairie Public Library

A 3D Printing service is the latest in what those at the Grande Prairie Public Library is a long line of steps towards more technology-based programming at the facility.

Emerging Technologies Librarian Charlotte Andersen says residents can now bring completed 3D print files to the library, and for only the cost of the filament, which is around 15 cents a gram, and trained library staff will print out the final product.

“Somethings are really fun, and somethings are… tools and things, which might be fun for somebody,” Andersen laughs.

“It is something that not everybody can afford to just go out and buy, so it’s a fantastic resource where it can be provided as free possible as we can make it for somebody,” she adds.

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Andersen says they’re hoping to continue moving more towards having that sort of creative technology in the library. Saying they already have computers featuring programs like Adobe, Blender, AutoCAD, which can also utilize 3D printing technology. She says a lot of major urban centres, including Edmonton and Calgary, are also moving in similar ways.

“It’s more or less the standard for them, and since we are mid-sized, and not part of a huge city, we are kind of in that grey area where we feel like we’re playing catch up,” she says.

“There is that kind of discrepancy between what people think the library is doing, which is books, and what we are actually doing, which is bringing in resources.”

Andersen says the 3D printers and Creative Computers were purchased with funds from the Janssen Legacy Fund, a large bequest to the library by Grande Prairie resident Willie Janssen in 2010, with the money to be used to fund technology for children and teens.

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