Public Libraries

Mayor's plan could turn a page on Philadelphia's crumbling libraries

Mayor Kenney's ambitions $600 million "Rebuild" plan is aimed at fixing up many of those aging libraries and repairing run-down recreation centers.

The six-year initiative also calls for reorganizing space in some library buildings and creating new space in others.

The proposed makeover involves adding pre-kindergarten classrooms in some library branches as part of another major Kenney initiative: His goal of adding 10,000 "quality" Pre-K slots for 3- and 4-year-olds by 2020.

From Kenney's plan could turn a page on Philadelphia's crumbling libraries

San Jose library amnesty weighed as unpaid fines near $7 million

Diaz, who has since paid off his penalties, is not alone. The city's library system is facing a staggering and mounting $6.8 million in unpaid fines across its 23 branches -- the most library director Jill Bourne has seen in nearly three years on the job. That figure is roughly five times the amount of unpaid fines racked up a few years ago in Chicago, a city nearly three times San Jose's population. It also exceeds unpaid fines at public libraries in other major Bay Area cities such as Oakland, which has $3 million in outstanding fines, and San Francisco, which stands at $4.6 million.

From San Jose library amnesty weighed as unpaid fines near $7 million - San Jose Mercury News

The Unruly Pleasures of the Mid-Manhattan Library

In recent years, there has been much talk about what to do with the various library branches as they continue to adapt to the digital era. Originally, the Mid-Manhattan was due to be sold and its services moved into a fully renovated main building. Now those controversial plans have been scrapped in favor of a new “Midtown Campus Renovation,” and the Mid-Manhattan has been tapped for an overhaul, with designs set to be unveiled later this year, and completed by 2019. The carpets could certainly use a good cleaning, and it would be nice if the elevators and climate control worked better, but I hope the revamp won’t alter the branch’s freewheeling energy.

From The Unruly Pleasures of the Mid-Manhattan Library - The New Yorker

Why don’t public libraries deliver?

It got me to thinking: Why doesn’t the library team up with somebody with real expertise in the logistics of home delivery — Amazon, UPS or one of the many food delivery services that have sprung up over the past year or so — to figure out a way to cover “the last mile” — the journey from the library to my house and back again? Then it really would seem even more like Amazon Prime, and I can’t imagine that that wouldn’t help grow the market for library books.

From Why don’t public libraries deliver? - The Washington Post

11th hour call on Lambeth Council Cabinet members to “do the right thing” on libraries

PRESS CALL 1pm MONDAY 8 FEB OUTSIDE BRIXTON LIBRARY 11th hour call on Lambeth Council Cabinet members to “do the right thing” on libraries Lambeth Councillor Scott Ainslie will join staff picketing outside Brixton Library today (Monday 8thFeb) as he issues an 11th hour call on the council’s cabinet to reconsider its decision to close five libraries in the borough. “It’s not too late to do the right thing,” said Cllr Ainslie, referring to the slogan the council uses to urge residents to play their part in activities such as recycling and paying their council tax. “It’s hard to find an

Why America's Public Library System Will Survive

Author Jorge Luis Borges once wrote, "I have always imagined that Paradise will be a kind of library." Librarian historian Wayne Wiegand's new book, "Part of Our Lives: A People's History of the American Public Library," explores the library's importance as a civil and social space. We'll discuss his book and why libraries are still flourishing in the Internet age.

From Why America's Public Library System Will Survive: Forum | KQED Public Media for Northern CA

What happens when libraries are asked to help the homeless find shelter?

And at the same time, libraries are dealing with rising crime rates, including an uptick in stabbings, shootings, drug use, narcotics sales and even prostitution. On a humid Florida afternoon in 2014, a homeless man crept up behind someone making a copy at the Sarasota County Public Library’s main branch and stabbed him in the back. The victim staggered to the circulation desk, leaving a trail of blood down the stairs. Several months later, at another Sarasota County branch, police caught a homeless couple cooking meth on library grounds. The couple slept in a small homeless encampment behind the library and spent most days inside for shelter.

From What happens when libraries are asked to help the homeless find shelter - The Washington Post

Aspen Institute Issues Report on Outcomes Following the State-wide Dialogue on Connecticut's Public Libraries

"The role of public libraries in communities across the state continues to expand as needs increase," explains Kendall Wiggin, State Librarian, Connecticut State Library. "The dialogue helped focused on how to leverage the assets of our state's public libraries to build more knowledgeable, healthy and sustainable communities across the state, and how to improve the sustainability of public libraries in Connecticut. The report that is being released today outlines these discussions along with the steps we will be taking moving forward."

From Aspen Institute Issues Report on Outcomes Following the State-wide Dialogue on Connecticut's Public... -- WASHINGTON, Jan. 27, 2016 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ --

Take a Scavenger Hunt Through Toronto’s 100 Libraries

Visiting each of the Toronto Public Library System’s 100 branches sounds like a daunting task, and this literary scavenger hunt aims to navigate you through each one.

Toronto-based graphic designer and web developer Noah Ortmann created the Toronto Library Passport as a way of encouraging local readers to explore each outpost in the city and utilize their free resources. One challenge urges readers to find a book about Roman architecture, while another instructs you to read a mystery novel in the Arthur Conan Doyle Collection—a room in the Toronto Reference Library modeled after Sherlock Holmes’s study. The 36-page booklet also includes branch hours, information about fines, and spaces to jot down your impressions of each location.

From Take a Scavenger Hunt Through Toronto’s 100 Libraries | Mental Floss

Sacramento’s ‘Library of Things’ Lets You Borrow GoPros, Sewing Machines, and Ukuleles

 The program makes great sense in urban communities, which thrive on publicly connected spaces and resources. Other cities have similar services—the Berkeley Public Library, for instance, created a Tool Lending Library stocked with weed eaters, hedge trimmers, demolition hammers, and electric plumbing snakes.

Reddit users discussed the idea in the Today I Learned community. They noted some of the non-book items they can check out at their own local libraries.

From Sacramento’s ‘Library of Things’ Lets You Borrow GoPros, Sewing Machines, and Ukuleles | Upvoted

(thanks little_wow)

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