April 26, 2012




Seeks funding to restore Central Library’s main entryway

(BROOKLYN, NY) April 26, 2012 – Brooklyn Public Library’s (BPL) Central Library is one of 40 historic sites throughout New York City that has been selected to compete for a chance to win a $250,000 grant from Partners in Preservation, a program from American Express and the National Trust for Historic Preservation. BPL has requested funding to replace the bronze and glass doors that form the entrance of the landmarked Central Library. The new doors would be exact replicas of the original doors, which, after 70 years of usage, are no longer able to be repaired.  


“We are thrilled that Central Library has been recognized as one of New York City’s historic treasures and chosen to participate in the Partners in Preservation program,” said Linda E. Johnson, President and CEO of BPL. “Approximately one million people visit Central Library every year to access the resources needed to improve their lives. We have an incredible opportunity to receive much-needed funding to fix our entryway and I encourage all New Yorkers to show their support by voting for BPL.” 


Three grant recipients will be selected based on a popular vote by the public. People can vote once a day, everyday through May 21 at Votes can also be cast through the Partners In Preservation Facebook page: Winners will be announced on May 22.


Designed to resemble an open book, BPL’s Central Library is a modernist landmark and one of NYC’s greatest civic spaces. Opened to the public in 1941, it was designed by Morton Githens and Francis Keally and features Art Deco detailing by sculptors Thomas Hudson Jones and C. Paul Jennewein. Its majestic 50-foot entry portico is set into a concave façade and flanked by pylons decorated with gold-leafed figures depicting the evolution of art and science. A decorative bronze screen above the triple doors features 15 panels depicting notable characters in American writing.


Central Library will be holding an Open House Weekend May 5 - 6. Visitors can take part in behind-the-scenes tours of the building and access the rooftop, which offers views of Manhattan, downtown Brooklyn and the Statue of Liberty, on Saturday, May 5 at 11:00, 12:30, 2:00 and 3:30 and on Sunday, May 6 at 1:30 and 3:30. Please email to RSVP for tours.


The public is also encouraged to visit BPL’s new blog, featuring daily facts and perspectives on Brooklyn. Log on to for more information. 


About Brooklyn Public Library: 

Brooklyn Public Library (BPL) is an independent library system for the 2.5 million residents of Brooklyn. It is the fifth largest library system in the United States with 60 neighborhood libraries around the borough. BPL offers free programs and services for all ages and stages of life, including a selection of books in more than 30 languages, author talks, literacy programs and public computers. BPL’s eResources, such as eBooks and eVideos, catalog information and free homework help, are available to customers of all ages 24 hours a day at our website:


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Brooklyn Public Library

Brooklyn Public Library is an independent New York City library system serving the borough of Brooklyn. It is the fifth largest in the United States. Its Central Library, Business Library, and 58 neighborhood libraries offer free information, programs and computer access to people of all ages. You can reach the Library's resources of over 70 reference databases, catalog information and news 24 hours a day at