Thursday, June 20, 2013

Pacific Saved for the Moment

A Deal Spares a Brooklyn Library, For Now (NY Times)

Hallelujah! The Pacific branch has been spared from imminent sale and/or demolition, as part of a deal to ensure Council approval of zoning for the Fort Greene "cultural center", but the evasive tone of the BPL statement does not exactly inspire confidence:

“It has become clear that the neighborhood highly values that branch and its historic building,” Jeremy Soffin, a spokesman for the Brooklyn Public Library, said in a statement. “B.P.L. is committed to working with elected officials and community stakeholders to develop an appropriate plan for the Pacific Street building through an open community process. The plan will acknowledge the needs of the library and the community. This plan could include maintaining some or all of the Pacific Street building and continuing to provide library service and programming for children in the community.”

Still, the library is safe for the moment, and residents and community groups did a stellar job in protecting it during these critical last months of the Bloomberg administration.  Get down to Pacific & celebrate.  There's no good news - short term or otherwise - for the Brooklyn Heights branch though, and it's up to all New Yorkers who value their public library systems to continue to fight for their preservation. 

Essential further reading on libraries & developers:  Noticing New York

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