The Coney Island Branch of the Brooklyn Public Library reopened on Wednesday for the first time since it was severely damaged by Superstorm Sandy almost a year ago. The lobby and interior have been decorated with photos of Coney Island’s landmark Wonder Wheel, Cyclone and Parachute Jump from the library’s Brooklyn collection. The Jump itself is just down the block and can be seen from the Mermaid Avenue library’s plate-glass windows.
A few weeks after Sandy, the Daily News reported that five Brooklyn libraries wrecked by Sandy would require $10 million in repairs with the Coney Island location being one of the most seriously damaged. 35,177 books and DVDs were lost. The photos were horrific. Built in 1956, the library not only has new books and DVDs, it was beautifully redesigned to reflect the history of the neighborhood and meet the 21st century needs of the community.
The children’s books and the computers, which used to be on the second floor, are now located on the main floor. The new computer stations, comfy reading chairs, and kid-sized tables equipped with iPads were already popular on opening day. The second floor is now designated “the quiet room” for studying and its auditorium has been replaced by two meeting rooms on the first floor.
Recycled boards from the Coney Island Boardwalk are incorporated into the design of the ceiling. The $2.5 million rebuilding effort was supported by public and private funding. You can make a contribution to the Coney Island Library on the Brooklyn Public Library’s website. Make sure to select “Additional Options – I would like to direct my donation to Coney Island.”
Related posts on ATZ…
October 2, 2013: Photo Album: Coney’s Rebuilt Steeplechase Pier Opened Today
September 25, 2013: Clock Ticking on Plan for the Landmark Childs Building
March 14, 2013: Photo of the Day: Repairing Sandy-Damaged Steeplechase Pier
October 31, 2012: Photo Album: Hurricane Sandy’s Aftermath in Coney Island