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A blog from CityRealty (Links below will take you to the 6sqft site)


All renderings via Mecanoo All renderings via Mecanoo
Just days before New York City went on lockdown to contain the spread of COVID-19, the New York Public Library was hard at work on reopening plans for the Stavros Niarchos Foundation Library (SNFL), formerly known as the Mid-Manhattan Library, years after it closed for a full-scale renovation. The May reopening was suspended as all library branches closed as part of the efforts to contain the virus. However, as part of New York City's reopening plan, the SNFL is one of eight library branches that will open for "grab-and-go" service, more details of which can be found here.
Anthony Marx, President and CEO of the New York Public Library, has acknowledged that the SNFL has never lived up to the magnificent, Beaux-Arts Stephen A. Schwarzman Building across the street. However, nearly three years after closing for renovations, a new master plan by Mecanoo and Beyer Blinder Belle is set to give the landmarked building a run for its money. The library takes its new name in honor of the foundation’s gift of $55 million. (For perspective, this was second only to Mr. Schwarzman’s $100 million donation.)
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The facade has been beautifully cleaned up, and an addition with a copper rooftop, to be one of the only free public roof terraces in Midtown, matches surrounding buildings in terms of materiality. Construction of the addition topped out in September 2018, and work on the interiors began that same year. This commenced after the builders analyzed library usage data, surveyed the public, and met with community stakeholders.
Mid-Manhattan-Library-3 The Long Room
Mid-Manhattan-Library-02 Main entrance on Fifth Avenue
Mid-Manhattan-Library-7 Library interiors before and after
The centerpiece of the SNFL will be the “Long Room,” an open, atrium-inspired wall of browsable shelving spanning several stories. One full floor will be dedicated to children’s books and programming. There will be a separate library for teens as well as teen study rooms, recording studio, and media lab. Elsewhere in the library, an employment skills center will occupy an entire floor with an adjacent floor offering job-search help and small business support. An adult learning center will provide career service, English language and literary assistance, and media and technology training. Moreover, the roof terrace will host an event center and cafe.
With more than 1.7 million visits a year and an annual circulation of more than two million items, the Mid-Manhattan branch had the New York Public Library’s highest circulation figures prior to the renovation. Those numbers are sure to go up in the wake of the SNFL's gorgeous renovation and expansive, user-friendly new interiors.
Mid-Manhattan-Library-4 Roof terrace

Local Listings
16-West-40th-Street-1 All images of The Bryant via The Corcoran Group

100-West-39th-Street-1 All images of Bryant Park Tower via R New York

400-Fifth-Avenue-1 All images of 400 Fifth Avenue via Halstead

445-Fifth-Avenue-1 All images of Fifth Avenue Tower via Compass

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Content Specialist Michelle Mazzarella Michelle is a contributing writer and editor for real estate news in New York City