October 25, 2014

Greenpoint Library and Local Brooklyn Artisans Create a Crafting Circle

Zine making at Greenpoint Hand Skills

A group of twelve people gather around a table about to transform used bicycle tubes into fashionable pouches or change purses. Next month it could be knitting—or making bracelets from old printer cables. At the Greenpoint branch of the Brooklyn Public Library (BPL), the library has tapped into the New York City borough’s thriving artisanal community to create a popular monthly workshop for 12-15 adults.

NYC Kids Rally for Libraries; City Council Members Urge Full Funding

NYC Kids Rally for Libraries; City Council Members Urge Full Funding

More than a dozen New York City Council members, the presidents of New York’s three library systems, and several hundred librarians, library staff, supporters, advocates, and children from nearby schools rallied on the steps of city hall to protest $106 million in proposed funding cuts. Council members Jimmy Van Bramer and Vincent J. Gentile also pledged to introduce legislation that would create a baseline of stable funding for the city’s public library services.

For Brooklyn PL, Planned Sale of Branches Promises Opportunity, Provokes Concern

Liu at rally

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.

NYPL, Queens Libraries Comment on Simon & Schuster Ebook Lending Deal

NYPL, Queens Libraries Comment on Simon & Schuster Ebook Lending Deal

Simon & Schuster (S&S) on Monday announced a one-year pilot program in which the publisher’s complete catalog of ebooks will be available for sale and lending at the New York Public Library (NYPL), the Brooklyn Public Library (BPL, and the Queens Library beginning April 30.

Urban Librarians Unite Plants Mini Libraries, Plans Conference

ULU mini library at Brooklyn Public Library's closed Red Hook branch

  Urban Librarians Unite (ULU) collected more than 20,000 children’s books to help replace library collections damaged by Hurricane Sandy. The library advocacy and support group, founded by 2012 LJ Mover & Shaker Christian Zabriskie, also placed Mini Libraries in front of libraries that were closed by storm damage. Locations include Queens Library branches in […]

InfoCommons Offers Vision of Brooklyn’s Future

InfoCommons Offers Vision of Brooklyn’s Future

The Brooklyn Public Library on Tuesday unveiled its Central Library’s Shelby White and Leon Levy Information Commons area—a new public space designed to complement the building’s history while pointing toward the library’s future. The 5,500 square foot area “is really what I consider the nucleus around which our future service delivery strategies will revolve,” Richard Reyes-Gavilan, BPL’s Chief Librarian, told a group of librarians gathered from throughout the region to preview the space last week.

In Sandy’s Wake, Library Systems Help City Keep Students Connected

In Sandy’s Wake, Library Systems Help City Keep Students Connected

In the wake of Hurricane Sandy, the New York, Queens, and Brooklyn Public Library have partnered with the city to provide online courses to students displaced from their homes.

NYPL, BPL, 3M Officially Launch Penguin Ebook Pilot Test

NYPL, BPL, 3M Officially Launch Penguin Ebook Pilot Test

The 3M Cloud Library, the New York Public Library (NYPL), the Brooklyn Public Library (BPL), and publisher Penguin Books have officially launched a pilot program that will allow patrons of the two systems to check out a selection of Penguin ebook titles six months after initial publication. NYPL will also offer additional titles from the 3M cloud library, the company said in an announcement today.

Update: NYC Budget Restores Most Library Funding

This article has been updated to include information on the final vote. The New York City budget restored nearly $90 million of a threatened $96 million cut to public libraries in an agreement announced June 25. The City Council approved the fiscal year 2013 budget agreement on June 28. The budget also includes more than […]

NYC Libraries Consider Common Card

Distribution of new “common” library cards to more than a million school children in New York City this summer is viewed as tangible progress toward the more far-reaching goal of creating the first unified, seamless library experience for residents in all five boroughs.