The South Burlington Community Library was established in October 1971, with the goal of serving both the school district and community at large. Originally located in South Burlington High School, the library serves a growing and increasingly culturally diverse community in one of the largest municipalities in Vermont.
From 1971 to 2001, both the school and community Library were managed by one professional librarian, supported primarily by school funds, with only a small amount of funds allocated for the community's needs. Fortunately, in May 2001, the City Council approved the hiring of a full-time community librarian to better address the public's library needs.
After the arrival of the community librarian, there were numerous improvements to the Library. With the financial assistance of grants obtained through the Vermont Public Library foundation, the Library renovated and expanded its children's library; opened a new entrance on the north side of the building; and expanded staffing and program offerings, both on-site and through outreach to the city's growing senior population. These changes were consistent with renewed interest in the growth and development of the Library as a vital community resource.
On December 7, 2017 the Public Library relocated to the University Mall as a temporary home, while plans for a Community Center that would permanently house the Library and City Hall were underway. In November 2018, the South Burlington community approved the ballot initiatives that would make this plan a reality.