The Brooklyn Public Library’s (BPL) first Carnegie Library, the Pacific Branch, has been spared from sale and demolition after all—but perhaps only for a brief while. Then again, new political leadership in the city may make a difference, regarding not only this building but libraries in general. Council Member Letitia James, who represents the area [...]
BPL, one of three systems in New York City and the country’s fifth-largest library (by population served), has suffered consistent underfunding of capital needs, with its 59 locations facing a $230 million backlog of deferred maintenance, barely dented by the $15 million annual allotment of capital funding.
Their solution: sell two aging libraries that occupy valuable land, and work with real estate developers to include libraries in residential towers. It’s not uncommon for urban libraries to consider mixed-use buildings, though few face the real estate froth characteristic in Brooklyn.