The South Antrim MLA said: “This is an exciting project and is one which points towards a future we all want – a thriving and regenerated Antrim.
“Construction is starting in the summer and local people will be looking forward to using the wide range of resources available in the new library. This facility will also provide a focal point for the community and will create the new services that the people of Antrim want and deserve.
“Lifelong learning is extremely important and I am glad that this project incorporates resources which will help deliver in this sphere.
“Antrim has waited far too long for this development, and the Ulster Bar corner has been blighted for a generation. The library is not only positive in itself, but also a statement about the economic regeneration of the town centre.
“It is disgraceful that government dogma, insisting on a private finance scheme which proved to be unworkable, has delayed the library for so long. I hope that continuing efforts to improve traffic management in Railway Street and support the improved town bus service accompany the library development.”