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Kings Park Library Closes as Commack Branch Reopens

Local branch closed doors Thursday to begin extensive remodeling project.

The closed Thursday to begin an extensive remodeling project that is projected to last until early 2012 bringing it up to speed in areas it was deficient and modernizing existing spaces.

“It is good news for library patrons at Kings Park who have been waiting so patiently for this to begin,” said Library Director Robert Lusack.

Renovations were originally projected to begin earlier this year, however a particularly harsh winter set the back a few weeks. The renovated building is expected to open within a few weeks and will be followed by the closing if the main Smithtown branch.

Patrons can expect to see a new 1500 sq ft. children’s department as well as a handicap accessible elevator. The current lift was not working and outdated.

The project is designated as LEED certified, a process which promotes green and sustainable development through such things as energy efficiency, green materials and other criteria. According to Lusack, heating and cooling systems will be upgraded and energy efficient, cleaning products will be environmentally friendly and new windows will be energy efficient as well.

Each of the updated branches will have  something that sets it apart from the others to give it character and charm.

“Kings Park will have a nautical theme. Seagulls, scallop shells and starfish will be found in hand painted murals by the reference desk and children’s section,” he said.

“Everything will be touched. In areas we can reuse items we will such as adding new end panels to existing shelves. In Commack the remodel was seamless. You can’t tell the old from the new,” said Lusack.

In additon to a new and larger children's sections the teen area will be updated and wi-fi will be available throughout the building.

Assistant Director Sue McManus directed staff and movers as they packed up the thousands of books and objects that will be put into storage as the renovations take place. Books will be placed in a storage facility until the building is ready.

“Patrons who have books checked out will be able to use the book drop in the front of the building for a few more weeks. After that, patrons can return at any of the other open branches,” said McManus.

Due to safety reasons the playground behind the library will be closed during renovations.

Ann Riker, a Kings Park resident and library clerk was looking forward to the update and will be working at the Commack branch during the construction.

“It is going to be beautiful. We are excited about the changes,” she said.

kptree April 15, 2011 at 06:40 PM
So happy to see Kings Park library finally getting an update. I will always remember the excitement of getting my first library card there- the librarian typed my name on the little green paper card while I waited. The KP library was the place my mom introduced me to books that she'd loved when she was a child. Kings Park deserves a library that can compete with the surrounding communities- more technology, more choices of books and programs, and above all, more efficient space. It's great to see it finally happening.
Kathleen Wylie Willis April 16, 2011 at 03:09 AM
I was sad when I saw the title of the article--I grew up in KP and got my first library card there too! So many memories! I loved going there! I am happy they are now remodeling it. I was there last Spring,and got to see it one last time like it pretty much always was, I guess (so small!). I'm sure the new version will be awesome for kids and adults alike!
chefcristo April 23, 2011 at 12:08 PM
whatever renovations take place will benefit the smithtown library system and the community that it serves. the commack branch is quite inviting since its recent re-opening. a coffee and snack cafe should be seriously considered for each branch: revenue would be generated, and a cafe would add a contemporary atmosphere as in nearby bookstores, eg. , barnes an noble, book revue and the borders in stony brook. let our library system keep up with the times: a few easy chairs are available, why not an up-to- date cafe? chris volpe

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