The new Anacostia Neighborhood Library opened its doors this morning. Mayor Adrian Fenty, Council Chairman Vincent Gray, Councilmember Harry Thomas, Councilmember Yvette Alexander, Chief Librarian Ginnie Cooper, Architect Phil Freelon, and members of the District of Columbia Board of Library Trustees joined in the celebration at 1800 Good Hope Road, S.E.
“This facility is a perfect example of the city government striving to deliver world-class services and facilities to our neighborhoods,” said Mayor Fenty. “This state-of-the-art facility will serve as a valuable tool for our youth providing them with additional educational resources enabling them to continue down the path of academic progress.
Surrounded by children at the Benning Neighborhood Library, Actor and Humanitarian Danny Glover, read a story and took questions to raise awareness about the important role libraries play for children and for communities.
Glover’s visit, the day before his new movie “Death at a Funeral” opens in theaters, was to celebrate National Library Week and to help the Lubuto Library Project with their effort to build new libraries in Zambia.
“The DC Public Library has been working hard to show that great communities have libraries that offer the public a variety of books, classes and computers,” said Pam Stovall, associate director at the DC Public Library. “Lubuto has a similar mission and we are delighted to partner with them to showcase how a world-class library looks.”
The DC Public Library fiscal year 2011 proposed budget is essentially flat with a decrease of about $170,000 over the fiscal year 2010 budget. This budget allows the library to maintain its current hours and provide the resources needed for the new libraries. Seven new libraries open in fiscal year 2011 and three this year with Benning Neighborhood Library opening Monday, April 5, Anacostia Library opening later this month and Watha T. Daniel/Shaw opening this summer.
“The Mayor and City Council have tough choices to make with next year’s budget,” said DC Public Library Chief Librarian Ginnie Cooper. “We are grateful for their commitment to libraries and the important role we play in supporting public education.”
The DC Public Library opened the new 22,000-square-foot Benning Neighborhood Library Monday morning with a ribbon cutting. In addition to celebrating the first of five new libraries opening this year, the event showcased the District’s rapidly-improving library system.
Mayor Adrian Fenty joined D.C. Council Chairman Vincent Gray, Council Committee on Libraries, Parks and Recreation Chair Harry Thomas, Jr., Ward 7 Council Member Yvette Alexander, Chief Librarian Ginnie Cooper, and members of the District of Columbia Board of Library Trustees for the ceremony and tour at 3935 Benning Rd. N.E.
While the FCC’s newly-released National Broadband Plan recommends creating partnerships to increase the relevance of broadband Internet among older Americans, 60 District residents received a free computer after completing a DC Public Library sponsored computer-training program.
“This program addressed the cost, relevance and comfort with technology barriers outlined in the National Broadband Plan as critical for increasing the number of older Americans using Internet at home,” said Chris Tonjes, chief information officer with the DC Public Library. “District residents aged 55 and over received free training at the Woodridge or Francis A. Gregory Neighborhood Library and, through our partners, received the equipment needed to connect to the Internet.”