By Madina Toure
Queens Borough President Melinda Katz has allocated $14 million for key expansions, renovations and technology across 12 branches of the Queens Library System.
The funds, which comes from her fiscal year 2016 discretionary funds, include $3.8 million for the expansion of the Queens Library at Arverne, $3.5 million for interior renovations at the branch at Baisley Park, $2.75 million for a second elevator at the branch at Flushing and $2.2 million for exterior façade and multi-purpose room renovations at the branch at St. Albans.
“The board of trustees – which the mayor and I reformed in 2014 — thanks to prompt state legislation – continues to move the library in the right direction consistent with its educational purpose,” Katz said in a statement. “This capital allocation will help ensure the Queens Library branches remain up-to-date and better able to serve (their) educational purpose as a community hub of learning, literacy and culture.”
Interim President Bridget Quinn-Carey said the library appreciates the investment Katz is making in library infrastructure and technology.
“Creating inviting, inspiring spaces and keeping our library buildings in a state of good repair protects the resources our community libraries offer and ensure a welcoming and secure environment for millions of customers,” Quinn-Carey said in a statement.
Carl Koerner, chairman of the library’s board of trustees, said the funds will enable the library to update its services.
“It will allow the library to substantially upgrade its infrastructure, providing a better environment for library customers,” Koerner said.
Reach reporter Madina Toure by e-mail at mtour