Less than 20 years after the new building was constructed at 900 Webster Street, the Allen County Public Library was already feeling that it needed more space. The Genealogy Department has moved many materials into subbasement storage and seating was limited. It needed more than its 6000 square feet.

Plans were made to tear down several buildings along Wayne Street (including the old YWCA), and a new wing added to contain more storage in the two lower levels, expansion space for the Young Adults Department and a new auditorium on the first floor, with all of the new space on the second floor to be the Genealogy Department's new home. Construction began in August 1979. The next year, the library system became the Allen County Public Library. The department was closed to the public December 1, 1980. The move itself took only one day and 125 volunteers. Book carts were labeled with color codes and lines to follow were taped to the floor. The department reopened January 19, 1981 with more seating and a light-controlled room for reading microfilm.