BPL

Councillor presses for trustees’ meeting to halt BPL closures

By 
Gintautas Dumcius, News Editor
Jun. 4, 2010

Youthful opposition: Some of the BPL's key constituents- kids- took to the mic to protest library closings at a City Hall rally on Thursday, June 3. Photo by Dan CurrieYouthful opposition: Some of the BPL's key constituents- kids- took to the mic to protest library closings at a City Hall rally on Thursday, June 3. Photo by Dan CurrieUnder questioning from city councillors, the head of the Boston Public Library said Thursday evening she would ask the chair of the board of trustees to convene to weigh potential state and local aid aimed at preventing branch closures.

City Councillor At-Large Felix Arroyo pressed Boston Public Library President Amy Ryan on the board of trustees holding a meeting sometime next week after state lawmakers attended last night’s City Council hearing on the BPL budget and noted they were getting a noncommittal response when offering state aid to keep libraries open.

Ryan said she did not have the authority to say whether the money would be accepted and used to keep open the four branches slated for closure, including the one in Lower Mills. That authority is with trustees and their chair Jeffrey Rudman, she said.  Read more

BPL forming task force for Lower Mills shut-down

By 
Staff
May. 19, 2010

By Reporter Staff
The Reporter has learned that Boston Public Library officials are organizing a meeting for this Monday, May 24, to form a task force as they move forward with their plans to close the Lower Mills Library. The meeting is slated for 6:30 p.m. on Monday at Carney Hospital, in the president’s board room.

Koren Stembridge, the BPL’s chief director of partnerships, said Wednesday that the meeting would discuss “transitioning services from the library.” The meeting, she said, is open to the public, although the Reporter had not been officially notified about the meeting as of press time this week. Stembridge said that the meeting was announced at Tuesday evening’s meeting of the Lower Mills Civic Association.  Read more

Lower Mills library on chopping block

Boston Public Library (BPL) trustees will vote Friday on a plan to shut the Dorchester Lower Mills and three other branches to cut a budget hole and concentrate on the "transformation" of the library system.  Read more

Hope on a Mattapan street corner

mattapan library dedication: Mayor Tom Menino, flanked by State Rep. Willie Mae Allen, left, and City Councillor Charles Yancey, cuts the ribbon at the new Mattapan Branch Library on Feb. 28, 2009.Mattapan library dedication: Mayor Tom Menino, flanked by State Rep. Willie Mae Allen, left, and City Councillor Charles Yancey, cuts the ribbon at the new Mattapan Branch Library on Feb. 28, 2009.Last Saturday's official opening of the new Mattapan branch library was a feel-good event, something that's increasingly hard to come by at this moment in time. The malaise of a deepening national recession - and the spectre of further job cuts here on the homefront - do not exactly a party atmosphere make.

Yet, there was a buoyancy to the spirit in this spectacular new building that could have been interpreted by some as hope. Hope that even in the uncertain days that are surely to come, we can lean on a sturdy foundation of neighbors and history to pull us through the toughest of times.

Mayor Tom Menino - who presided over much of Saturday's festivities - can take great pride in the facility that his administration has brought to this corner of the city. It is clearly now the finest public indoor space of its kind within the neighborhoods south of the city center and his administration finally brought it into being.  Read more

Neighbors get sneak peek at new Mattapan library

No opening date has been set yet, but the new Mattapan Library is swiftly becoming a reality on Blue Hill Avenue. Members of the task force that advised the city on its construction got an advance tour on Monday, just to see if there were any lingering concerns from the group.  Read more

In Lower Mills, library friends plan June 7 'extravanganza'

The Friends of the Lower Mills Branch Library hope to change things up at this year's annual fundraiser on Saturday, June 7 by allowing neighbors to get their antiques appraised and giving local merchants and organizations a chance to introduce themselves to the community.

This year's Library Extravaganza has expanded to include a silent auction, face painting and crafts for the kids, as well as blood pressure and sugar screenings by Carney Hospital nurses.  Read more

Designs for Mattapan's library scrutinized at meeting

Tempers ran high toward the end of a Monday meeting on the new Mattapan Public Library currently under construction. Though neighbors were still concerned about traces of a cleaning chemical that contaminates the groundwater under the location, the real fireworks flew over furniture and carpets.

"Things went along without our input," said community activist Barbara Crichlow toward the end of a long presentation by the city's Property and Construction Management Department (PCMD). "He brought the materials here but there were no choices, we were dictated to."  Read more

Cleaning chemical fouls library site

A Blue Hill Avenue dry cleaner may be held responsible for the release of a toxic chemical called perchloroethylene into the groundwater underneath the construction site of the new Mattapan Library. The chemical is a suspected carcinogen and worse in large quantities, but city officials said the site poses no imminent health hazard to residents and will not delay the library's construction.

It might, however, have to be cleaned up.  Read more