NEW YORK – New Yorkers are getting their first glimpse of The New York Public Library's totally-renovated central circulating branch The Stavros Niarchos Foundation Library (SNFL), as a portion of the branch's first floor opened on July 13 for grab-and-go service, according to a New York Public Library (NYPL) news release, dated July 17.
The transformed branch on 40th Street and Fifth Avenue - the Library's largest circulating branch formerly known as Mid-Manhattan Library and now named for the Stavros Niarchos Foundation because of its generous support - will eventually offer the public hundreds of thousands of books, spaces for programs and classes, the only free, public rooftop space in the City, new, expansive areas dedicated to children and teens, the Pasculano Learning Center offering career services, English language and literacy classes, media and technology training, and a multimedia studio, and a world-class Business Center featuring the staff, programs, and circulating collections formerly offered at the Science, Industry and Business Library (SIBL) at 188 Madison Avenue.
Even as the first floor opened for limited service on July 13, work continues on other parts of the library, designed by architect Francine Houben of Mecanoo with Beyer Blinder Belle, and funded by the City and with a generous gift from the Stavros Niarchos Foundation (SNF), in line with SNF's long standing and extensive commitment to the NYPL and libraries worldwide. A grand opening for the completed library (originally scheduled for May 15, 2020, but postponed because of COVID-19) is expected to take place later in 2020.
“This gift is a culmination of the Stavros Niarchos Foundation's long-standing and unwavering commitment to libraries around the globe,” said Library President Tony Marx of the grant.
“Public libraries are paradigmatic public institutions offering communities an array of critical services that extend far beyond the lending of books,” said SNF Co-President Andreas Dracopoulos. “The varied roles of public libraries place them, more than ever before, at the heart of our civic societies.”
Details on the much-anticipated renovation, which began in August 2017 and is essential to best serve the public, as the library opened in the 1970s in a space originally designed as a department store, are available online: https://nyplmidtown.org/project-phases/mid-manhattan-library/.
Details on grab-and-go service, what is expected of patrons, and how the Library is keeping patrons safe can also be found online: https://www.nypl.org/about/coronavirus.
About The New York Public Library
For 125 years, The New York Public Library has been a free provider of education and information for the people of New York and beyond. With 92 locations, including research and branch libraries, throughout the Bronx, Manhattan, and Staten Island, the Library offers free materials, computer access, classes, exhibitions, programming and more to everyone from toddlers to scholars, and has seen record numbers of attendance and circulation in recent years. The New York Public Library receives approximately 16 million visits through its doors annually and millions more around the globe who use its resources at www.nypl.org.
To offer this wide array of free programming, The New York Public Library relies on both public and private funding. Learn more about how to support the Library at nypl.org/support.