BROOKLYN ROCKS… AND READS!

November 01, 2018 at 5:15 am

Brooklyn is making an investment of the “literary kind” as libraries are recognized as the community’s path to a solid future.  We’re headed to Kings County for the latest.

Aired on October 31, 2018.

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Announcer: THIS IS 135 TUNNEL
STREET IN BROOKLYN.
THE FIRST WHAT USED TO BE A
MACHINE TOOLS FACTORY WILL BE
CONVERTED INTO A BRANCH WITH A
BROOKLYN PUBLIC LIBRARY.
OPENING IN 2020 THE FIRST NEW
BRANCH SINCE 1983.
>> NEIGHBORHOODS HAVE BEGUN TO
FLOURISH THAT DIDN'T EXIST 25,
35 YEARS AGO.
SO TO PUT A LIBRARY IN THE DUMBO
VINEGAR HILLS HOUSING AREA, NOT
MUCH OF A RESIDENTIAL COMMUNITY
IS TERRIFIC.
ACTUALLY THE FIRST TIME WE'VE
BUILT A LIBRARY IN A
NEIGHBORHOOD THAT DIDN'T HAVE
ONE IN THE LAST 40 YEARS.
>> Announcer: BROOKLYN'S PUBLIC
LIBRARY CEO SAYS THE NEW BRANCH
CONTINUES THE RENAISSANCE OVER
THE LAST FEW YEARS AND FRANKLY,
BROOKLYN AS A WHOLE.
BROOKLYN PUBLIC LIBRARY IS ONE
OF THREE SEPARATE AND
INDEPENDENT LIBRARY SYSTEMS IN
NEW YORK CITY.
THE OTHER TWO, NEW YORK TUB LICK
LIBRARY, SERVING THE BRONX,
MANHATTAN AND STATEN ISLAND, THE
OTHER, QUEENS LIBRARY, OF
COURSE, SERVES QUEEN.
THERE'S A STORIED HISTORY HERE
IN NEW YORK CITY ESTABLISHED IN
1896 WHEN BROOKLYN WAS STILL AN
INDEPENDENT CITY.
A COUPLE YEARS LATER IT BECAME A
PART OF NEW YORK CITY BUT KEPT
IT'S BELOVED LIBRARY.
BEGINNING OF THE 20th CENTURY,
U.S. STEEL MAGNATE ANDREW
CARNEGIE SOLD IT FOR WELL OVER
$14 BILLION IN TODAY'S MONEY.
WE SPENT THE REST OF HIS LIFE
GIVING AWAY HIS FORTUNE
INCLUDING A GRANT TO BUILD
LIBRARIES ACROSS THE CITY AND IN
TOTAL 67 BRANCHES WERE BUILT
BETWEEN 1902 AND 1929 WITH 21 IN
BROOKLYN.
MIRACULOUSLY, 18 ARE STILL
STANDING REFERRED TO AS THE
CARNEGIE LIBRARIES.
THESE ARE INCLUDED.
THAT'S WHERE WE FOUND BIANCA
WORKING AS A TEAM LIBRARIAN.
>> IT'S FUN.
REALLY REWARDING.
YOU SEE REGULARS COME IN THE
BRANCH.
YOU DEVELOP RELATIONSHIPS WITH
THEM.
YOU HAVE A MOMENT WHERE SOMEONE
IS WORKING ON A PROJECT, OR
THEY'RE SEARCHING FOR SOMETHING
THAT THEY REALLY, REALLY NEED,
AND YOU'RE THE PERSON THAT GETS
TO SEE THEM BE EXCITED THAT YOU
FOUND IT.
>> Announcer: HER OWN FRONT LINE
SO TO SPEAK OF THE BROOKLYN LIKE
BR
LIBRARIAN RENAISSANCE, MORE
BUSINESS THAN EVER BEFORE AND
ALL HAPPENING WHILE BIX BOX
CHAIN STORES ARE STRUGGLING OR
SHUTTING DOWN.
PART OF IT, THE SENSE OF
COMMUNITY FELT IN A LIBRARY.
>> WE HAVE A KNIT AND CROCHET
GROUP AT MY BRANCH, MEETS ONCE A
WEEK, AND A GROUP OF PEOPLE WHO
THEY ARE THE CROCHET CLUB.
LIKE, THEY SPEND TIME WITH ONE
ANOTHER.
YOU KNOW?
SO, LIKE, THAT'S THEIR
DESTINATION FOR THE WEEK.
THEY COME TO THE LIBRARY AND GO
TO KNIT AND CROCHET.
WE'RE NOT -- TRYING TO SELL
ANYTHING TO YOU.
YOU KNOW?
LIKE, WE WANT YOU TO COME IN AND
HAVE A GOOD EXPERIENCE.
FIND THE THING YOU WANT.
FIND SOMETHING THAT MAYBE IS
SIMILAR TO WHAT YOU'RE LOOKING
FOR.
JUST THE FACT THAT YOU CAN COME
IN.
YOU KNOW?
FOR TEENAGERS ESPECIALLY, COME
IN AFTER SCHOOL AND HAVE A PLACE
TO HANG OUT PAP PLACE TOBE.
NO PRESSURE TO ENGAGE MORE THAN
YOU WANT TO, I GUESS.
YOU'RE FREE TO COME IN AND
UTILIZE THE LIBRARY THAT YOU
WANT.
>> WE'RE NOT SO QUIET.
A BUSTLING PLACE.
IN THE CENTRAL LIBRARY NOW AND
GET OVER 1 MILLION VISITORS A
YEAR AND PEOPLE ARE HERE NOT
ONLY TO TAKE OUT BOOKS BUT TO
LOOK UP MATERIAL ON DATABASES.
TO GET HELP FROM LIBRARIANS.
ON THINGS LIKE STARTING A NEW
BUSINESS.
AND WE'RE HERE FOR LITERACY IN
THE BROZZEST SENSE.
>> Announcer: NO KIDDING.
BRUSH UP ON LITLITERACY?
A PLACE FOR THAT.
ON THE PLAZA, BOTH A
STATE-OF-THE-ART RECORDING
STUDIO THAT STAYS BUSY AND
BOOKED.
ITS LOCATED IN THE INFORMATION
COMMERCE, ONE OF THE MOST
POPULAR LOCATIONS IN THE LIBRARY
AND RELATIVELY NEW.
DEBUTING IN 2013, THE 5500
SQUARE FOOT SPACE SEATS MORE
THAN 100 LAPTOP USERS AND SPACE
FOR GROUP WORK AND TEAMWORK.
>> THE TRICK BE HERE FOR PATRONS
NEEDS.
PERHAPSALITIES AHEAD OF THEM TO
ANTICIPATE WHAT THEY MIGHT WANT
TO BE DOING AND WHAT THEY MIGHT
BE NEEDING IN THE FUTURE, BUT
NOT BEING SO FAR AHEAD THAT
WE'RE LEAVING PEOPLE IN THE DUST
AND WE'RE REALLY NOT BEING
USEFUL.
>> Announcer: SOMETIMES THOSE
LEFT BEHIND ARE FAMILIES OF
THOSE INCARCERATED.
IN AN EFFORT TO STAY CONNECTED,
BROOKLYN PUBLIC LIBRARY STARTED
THE TELL A STORY PROGRAM.
ALLOWING FAMILY MEMBERS TO BE
CONNECTED VIDEOCHAT.
SPECIFICALLY GEARED TOWARDS KIDS
IN ADDITION TO HAVE BE CHAT
FACILITIES, BROOKLYN PUBLIC
LIBRARY FILLS THE CHAT ROOMS
WITH BOOKS AND TOYS.
INMATES HAVE A SET OF CHILDREN'S
BOOKS DURING THE CALL SO THEY
CAN READ TO THEIR KIDS.
THE CHIEF LIBRARIAN AT THE
LIBRARY SAYS THE PROGRAM HELPS
CONNECT A COMMUNITY OFTEN
OVERLOOKED AND THE CONNECTION
GOES BEYOND THE PROGRAM.
>> NOT ONLY VISITING THEIR DAD
THROUGH VIDEO, LONG TERM
ENGAGING MORE IN AFTER-SCHOOL
PROGRAMS AND STORYTIMES AND THE
CAREGIVER CAN LOOK FOR A JOB IN
THE BUSINESS LIBRARY.
FOR US, STRENGTHENING THE BONDS
WITH THE COMMUNITY THAT CAN, IN
MANY WAYS, FEEL COMPLETELY
ISOLATED.
>> THE BROOKLYN LIBRARY ALONG
WITH THE OTHER LIBRARIES ACROSS
THE CITY BEGAN A NEW PROGRAM
CALLED CULTURE PATH.
THAT ALLOWS LIBRARY CARD HOLDERS
TO RECEIVE A FREE PASS TO ONE OF
THE DOZENS OF CULTURAL
INSTITUTIONS THROUGHOUT THE
CITY.
THEY'VE ISSUE AED MORE THAN
33,000 CULTURE PASSES SINCE IT
BEGAN.

Mutual of America PSEG

Funders

MetroFocus is made possible by James and Merryl Tisch, Sue and Edgar Wachenheim III, the Sylvia A. and Simon B. Poyta Programming Endowment to Fight Anti-Semitism, Bernard and Irene Schwartz, Rosalind P. Walter, Barbara Hope Zuckerberg, Jody and John Arnhold, the Cheryl and Philip Milstein Family, Janet Prindle Seidler, Judy and Josh Weston and the Dr. Robert C. and Tina Sohn Foundation.

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