Boston Public Library
Press Room

Posts Tagged ‘Community Gathering’

Mayor Walsh Celebrates Groundbreaking on Renovations to Jamaica Plain Branch of the Boston Public Library

Posted on September 25th, 2015 by BPL News in Media Releases

Today Mayor Martin J. Walsh, the Boston Public Library and its Board of Trustees, the City of Boston’s Property and Construction Management Department, and the Jamaica Plain community, celebrated a groundbreaking for a major renovation project for the Jamaica Plain Branch of the Boston Public Library located at 12 Sedgwick Street. The renovations to the building, constructed in 1911, will provide more than a 20% increase in space for the community to read, browse the book collection, access computers, attend and host meetings, and participate in programming.

“Libraries are at the heart of every Boston neighborhood, and the Jamaica Plain community is passionate about their community,” said Mayor Walsh. “This investment in the Jamaica Plain Branch of the Boston Public Library will provide new opportunities for learning to children, teens, and adults, and serve as a meeting place for neighbors.”

“Investing in our neighborhood libraries, and expanding learning and opportunity to all corners of the City, is core to the Boston Public Library’s mission,” said John Hailer, Interim Chair of the Boston Public Library Board of Trustees. “Thank you to Mayor Walsh for making this commitment to the Jamaica Plain Branch, and I look forward to gathering here again for the ribbon cutting.”

“The JP community has been advocating for these renovations for many years. Thanks to a great collaboration between neighbors, City Hall, and the BPL, this project is moving forward, and the new features of the Jamaica Plain Branch will be truly reflective of the needs of this diverse community,” said David Leonard, Interim President of the Boston Public Library.

The $10 million renovation includes: a 700-square foot addition facing South Street that will serve as a community reading lounge; a terrace along Sedgwick street where residents can read and mingle; multiple meeting spaces; improved and more flexible space for children, teens and adults; and a refreshed collection of 30,000 books. Technology improvements include 15 new desktop and 20 laptop computers, free WiFi, additional self-checkout stations, and a creative suite of software in the new digital maker-space. Other features include an elevator for full ADA accessibility to all levels, new and more efficient mechanical systems, parking for over 20 bikes, and new exterior landscaping.

To determine priorities in the building redesign, the Boston Public Library, the City of Boston’s Property and Construction Management team, and Utile, Inc. Architecture & Planning, the design firm for the project, collaborated closely with the Friends of the Jamaica Plain Branch Library and the community at-large. The general contractor for the project is Colantonio, Inc.

The Jamaica Plain Branch of the BPL will be closed throughout the renovation and is anticipated to re-open in spring 2017. During the construction Jamaica Plain residents are encouraged to use the nearby Connolly Branch of the BPL located at 433 Centre St, and the Egleston Square Branch of the BPL, located at 2044 Columbus Avenue.

Boston Public Library has a Central Library, twenty-four branches, map center, business library, and a website filled with digital content and services. Established in 1848, the Boston Public Library has pioneered public library service in America. It was the first large free municipal library in the United States, the first public library to lend books, the first to have a branch library, and the first to have a children’s room. Each year, the Boston Public Library hosts thousands of programs and serves millions of people. All of its programs and exhibitions are free and open to the public. At the Boston Public Library, books are just the beginning. To learn more, visit


Boston Public Library President Announces Collection Management and Systemwide Safety and Security Action Plans

Posted on June 3rd, 2015 by admin in Media Releases

Today, Boston Public Library (BPL) President Amy E. Ryan announced action plans for the BPL’s collection management and systemwide safety and security. The plans include an expanded and accelerated inventory and assessment of Special Collections with a focus on the most important and valuable, the transfer of 24,000 paper catalog cards to the electronic catalog over 12 months, and a completed comprehensive Systemwide Safety and Security Plan by the end of July 2015.

President Ryan made the announcement at a special meeting of the Boston Public Library Board of Trustees at the Central Library in Copley Square. The meeting included an update on the ongoing investigations into two missing artworks, the recently released external Operational and Financial Assessment of BPL by Chrysalis Management, LLC, an overview of the library’s systemwide safety and security, and an overview of BPL collection management.

Collection Management Action Plan

  • Inventory of the Print Collection
    • Expert preservationist Dr. Martha Mahard, with 35 years of experience at Harvard University, has begun an item-by-item inventory of all 200,000 prints and drawings and 120,000 chromolithographs to be completed by the end of the year.
    • Print staff redeployed to inventory; public service curtailed
      • Digital access remains


Renovated Second Floor Media Coverage

Posted on April 8th, 2015 by admin in General

Enjoy the clips and stories below about the Central Library Renovation and the corresponding opening of the new second floor:

• The Bay State Banner:
Boston Business Journal:
Boston Magazine:
Boston Neighborhood Network News:
Don’t Mind the Mess blog:
The Huntington News:
Suffolk Journal:

 Renovation photos


BPL Celebrates Central Library Renovation: Opening of Johnson Building Second Floor

Posted on February 24th, 2015 by admin in General

The ribbon cutting for the renovated second floor of the Johnson building took place this past Saturday, February 21, as Mayor Walsh, President Ryan, and  library users celebrated the completion of the first phase of the Central Library Renovation. The new second floor features a new children’s library, teen area, nonfiction collection, reference services, and a community reading area. A key feature in the Children’s Library is an early literacy area for the youngest learners, with a sensory learning wall intended to help children explore the world around them as they grow. In addition to collections for learners of all ages, other features include a story time space, technology and computer area, and a tween nook. Teen Central offers a media room, digital lab, diner-style booths for group work, quiet study space, and of course, teen collections. More than 3,500 visits to the children and teen rooms took place on opening weekend. Phase two of the renovation, to be complete in the summer of 2016, includes improvements to the exterior, first floor, mezzanine, and lower level. Follow project progress via the Compass blog.



February Literary Events at Boston Public Library Locations

Posted on January 29th, 2015 by admin in Media Releases

Branches and Central Library to host

Boston Public Library locations will host a variety of literary events, including author talks, book clubs, and programs for readers of all ages in February. Highlights include:

  • books2Romance & Mystery Book Club: Participants discuss Sandra Brown’s Standoff, which tells the story of a reporter caught in a deadly hostage drama while investigating a kidnapping on Thursday, February 5, at 6:30 p.m. at the Lower Mills Branch, located at 27 Richmond Street in Dorchester.
  •   The City-Wide Friends of the Boston Public Library host a book sale on Saturday, February 7, from 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. on the third floor of the McKim building in the Cushman Room at the Central Library in Copley Square.
  • Local historian and Beacon Hill resident Vincent Licenziato gives a presentation about the Emancipation Trail and the stories behind 23 statues, sculptures, and monuments relevant to the African American experience in America. Saturday, February 7, at 1 p.m. at the Codman Square Branch, located at 690 Washington Street in Dorchester. (more…)