By Margie Smith Holt
St. Agnes Library, located at 444 Amsterdam Avenue (81-82), will close temporarily beginning Monday, August 15, to facilitate floor replacement and repairs throughout the building. The branch is expected to reopen in December, according to the New York Public Library (NYPL).
Don’t fret. Time flies.
Meanwhile, here’s a little reading material about this branch, posted by the NYPL:
Beginning in 1893 as a parish library at St. Agnes Chapel on West 91st Street, the St. Agnes Branch also housed a small collection for the Library for the Blind. In 1906, the St. Agnes Branch opened its doors in its present home on Amsterdam Avenue. The three-story structure—featuring gracefully arched windows at the first and second floors, and a strongly detailed roofline—was erected with funds given to the city by Andrew Carnegie for the construction of branch libraries throughout the five boroughs.
The book drop will be unavailable starting the evening of Saturday, August 13, and book donations are long gone.
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After the branch closes, St. Agnes will hold two more in-person storytimes outdoors this month—at 10:30 a.m. on Wednesday August 17 and Wednesday August 31 at River Run Playground (at 83rd Street) in Riverside Park.
Dedicated to Frugal Frannie, who loves libraries.
I would’ve hoped the author would remind readers that you can order and pick up any branch’s books at any other branch of the New York Public Library. The nearest locations to St. Agnes are the Bloomingdale branch at 150 West 100th Street and the Riverside branch at 127 Amsterdam Avenue (between 65th and 66th streets) as well as the Library for the Performing Arts at Lincoln Center (off Amsterdam between 64th and 65th streets). See all locations at:
Why is the article dedicated to Frugal Fannie?
Frannie is fine! She just naturally loves libraries!
I’m glad the article mentions that the book drop is being removed, so people know they will incur fines if they take books out, and not return the books at another location. This happened to us at Bloomingdale which had an emergency 2 month closure, but is now open (looks the same).
There haven’t been fines on overdue materials since the end of 2021
There are no late fees anymore at the NY public library. You only get charged if you lose the book. You can keep renewing books too .
I don’t understand why they can’t leave the book drop open. This would greatly help reduce the inconvenience of having the branch closed. I assume that it can go at least 2-3 days without being emptied and someone could easily stop by periodically to empty it.
No library staff will be working at that location and there will be construction going on. Is someone supposed to come with a van, empty the book drop and drive the books to another location? Just keep renewing the items you have or return them at some other location
Yes, that would be helpful. There are vehicles moving books between different library branches all the time. This is no different. It would be a few hours a week – I’m sure they can find someone who would be happy to make a few extra dollars to do it.
Is this critical to my survival and happiness? No. But it is just a friendly suggestion.
There’s always a contrarian in every bunch…
The library can’t just hire someone to this for extra money. It’s a big institution with lots of hiring rules.
Most of the books returned in book drops are the ones checked out from that location. (Yes, a family member used to work at a public library).
In fact, since one can request a book from any library and pick it up at your local branch, many books returned at a book drop are NOT from that location. St Agnes has a fairly weak selection of children’s books. 95% of what I pick up from there, and then return to their book drop, are books from other branches. Wish they would do as Leon suggested. I can stop at 66 St on my way home from work to pick books up, but I can’t schlep my returns around with me all day to drop off after work. Sadly, this means books I borrow will be out of circulation longer than they need to be…
“Is someone supposed to come with a van, empty the book drop and drive the books to another location?”
That doesn’t sound overwhelming.
“Dedicated to Frugal Frannie.”
What does that mean? Is she ok?
The Bloomingdale Branch on W. 100th between Amsterdam and Columbus Avenues is open now — it has just reopened after several months closure for repairs. The NYPL are working on repairs and upgrades in the branch libraries in rotation … so now it’s St. Agnes’ turn.
So when you look up addresses at https://www.nypl.org/locations — make sure to click on the individual branch for information as to whether it’s undergoing work or not — as well as for the hours.
Bloomingdale Br was closed for a long time, opened, and then faulty pipe and so it closed again. So it reopened again?
Thanks for that information. It’s good to know that B’dale is open.
But it seems like not very long ago – just a few years – that St Agnes was closed for a major overhaul, including new lighting. Or is time playing tricks on my memory?
Anyway, I’m glad that there’s an alternative, and will await the new update with interest.
I remember it was closed for a long time, too. They really need to fix the A/C on the 2nd floor – it was always stifling.
This branch was recently closed for 3 years to be completely renovated. What did they forget to do/do wrong that they have to redo?
Yeah they completely ruined St. Agnes during that last years-long closure.
Before, it had been a library, for readers; afterward, the whole first floor became a playpen, baby carriages, toddlers, and their minders the overwhelming population.
I was forced thereby to stop visiting the library altogether, though that hasn’t stopped them from continuing to email me daily, hoping, seemingly, to secure a firm grip around my wallet with their canines & incisors.
Ain’t gonna happen.
Wow. Lighten up,. There is plenty of room to read upstairs. Do you want to have Trump and his types win and turn us into a nation of uneducated morons? I don’t think so. The best way to prevent this is to get kids excited about reading early, and the library does a great job of helping with this.
So many people in this neighborhood are looking for something to be angry about and are so selfish in their needs. What happened to doing things for the greater good?
Bringing in Trump replying to a message about a library.
You sound pleasant. Sorry that ppl have kids that want to read.