Monday, August 19, 2013

Library meet park

The first outdoor reading room in the United States was created in 1932 on Boston Commons. New York City adopted this idea in 1935 in Bryant Park and continues to do so today. Open aired reading rooms were organized in the US to bring library services to groups that did not have access to them and to lift the spirits during the depression era

Expanding library  opportunities for Community Board 4 residents

Manhattans west side  is a library poor community. there are 2 libraries in cb4(Chelsea and Hells kitchen) . Compare this to CB5 and CB6. (left side of map for readers who live outside of Manhattan)
Additionally the Muhlenberg library in Chelsea does not have enough room for adults . To make more room the reference collection was taken out. to make more room for seating, more book shelving was taken out.

 Do we need more libraries in Chelsea and hell's kitchen , yes! a new library is being asked for in the Hudson yards area . However this will take years and tens of millions of dollars to do.

In the interim we can  supplement the area's  libraries by creating a network of library affiliated outdoor reading  rooms in our communities parks. here's some examples of staffed and unstaffed outdoor reading rooms...

Staffed outdoor reading rooms
 Bryant park outdoor reading room
 In midtown (CB5)there is a outdoor reading room. It is possibly NYC's only permanent outdoor reading room It's in Bryant park and attracts 350-500 readers per day.

Columbus commons outdoor reading room


What can you do at a park? Run, skip, leap, walk, play, frolic, kick up your heels, let down your hair, read...
Read? Yes indeed. The Columbus Commons is home to a very special outdoor reading room. The friendly staff of the Columbus Commons Outdoor Reading Room invite visitors to the southern end of the park to enjoy all the pleasures of a library in the natural setting of Columbus Commons.
Uni Project
Thanks to a remarkable partnership between all three of New York City’s public library systems—The Brooklyn Public Library, New York Public Library, and Queens Library—with the Uni Project, there is an outdoor reading room throughout the summer on Governors Island, offering books, learning activities, and children’s programs. Visitors will be able to borrow books “in house,” register for library cards, sign up for summer reading, learn more about the Uni, and find out about what’s happening in each of the three New York City public library systems.

Unstaffed outdoor  reading rooms
the uni Columbus commons and bryant park reading room are all  staffed reading rooms.  Staffed outdoor reading rooms are expensive. Here's several examples of library outdoor affiliated reading rooms that are unstaffed

Little Free Libraries Open in Overton Park

East Parkway Little Free Library
East Parkway Little Free Library

Climbing through the tunnel at Rainbow Lake Playground or traversing the monkey bars at East Parkway Playground are fun ways to spend an afternoon.  But what if the kid in your life feels like reading Hop on Pop rather than playing hopscotch?

We’re happy to say that at Overton Park, we’ve now got you covered.  Over the past few weeks, we’ve opened not one but two Little Free Libraries in the park.  These small structures are full of books that kids can take at any time, for reading at the park or at home.  The libraries operate on the concept of “take a book, leave a book,” so that a healthy exchange will keep them stocked for the next curious kid....
 Both libraries have already gone through several cycles of books, so we’ll need your help to keep them stocked!  We’ve received generous donations from Books from Birth and Friends of the Memphis Public Library, but the libraries’ popularity means that books are usually “checked out” very quickly.

read more

Middletown adds 'library' in the park

The public library installed and now stocks a Little Free Library for all to use

MIDDLETOWN — The Middletown Public Library has a new branch, albeit one that’s only about the size of, well, a box of books.The library’s newest addition is a “Little Free Library,” artfully located in Dietrich Park near the popular splash pad.
Middletown Library Director Teresa Dennis said the idea grew in part out of a regular library patron — herself a retired school librarian — having noted that parents and grandparents like her who take kids to the splash pad could use something to read while they wait.
The result is a “dollhouse-style” widowed box built by Dennis’ husband and installed in the park, “positioned about kid-level.” Library staffers now regularly stock the box with donated adults and children’s books — nice ones, not scuffed ones, the director noted — that are free for the taking. Users are invited to “Take one, leave one,” though that’s not a requirement, and Dennis hasn’t noticed anyone else leaving books — yet.
read more 


Implementing unmanned   outdoor reading room system in NYC parks 
Stocking the reading rooms
- How about having the  reading rooms   stocked by NYPL discards  and donated children's books  with the parks department having responsibility for maintaining the reading rooms and  placing new books in the reading rooms on a regular basis. 
-the NYPL  has  trucks that delivers inter library loan books to its  different branches on a  frequent basis.  
- adding an additional stop to parks dept district HQ's to distribute reading room book.
-Parks dept staff  would then distribute  the books to outdoor reading rooms  in their districts parks and playgrounds .
number of books
 property of labels
-On book covers a sticker would be placed saying the book is part of the reading room. Please read and return to the room. 
 updating selections 
swap books  between parks. on a regular basis books from park a moved to park b, b to c and c to a.
add outdoor reading rooms outside of existing libraries

This bench will create an outdoor reading room in fromt of the muhlenberg library, when it is returned, after library renovations are completed.
 literacy artcle;
-very few libraries
+a lot of books in each
+collection constantly updates (sticky return)
+a lot of parks  and plazas
-very few activities
-almost never change