Brooklyn Public Library opens new branch under the Manhattan Bridge in Dumbo

October 13, 2021

All photos by Gregg Richards

At the Brooklyn Public Library’s newest branch, reading comes with a view. The library opened the Adams Street Library in Dumbo this week, marking the first new library built in the borough in nearly 40 years and the first branch to open in the neighborhood. Bordering Brooklyn Bridge Park and tucked underneath the Manhattan Bridge, the library has 15-foot windows that face the East River and lower Manhattan skyline.

Designed by WORK Architecture Company (WORKac) and constructed by Shawmut Design & Construction, the 6,500-square-foot library is located on the ground floor of a former trash processing center and features original elements like brick and exposed timber ceilings. On the exterior of the building, orange lettering spells out “Library,” welcoming the community inside the building.

In addition to books and other materials, the space provides flexible meeting rooms and programming space for patrons of all ages.

A children’s area is bright and elevated in the center of the library, with big windows looking out over the rest of the space. Teens also have a dedicated area for homework and hanging out.

“We placed the children’s area at the heart of this project, because they are who draw a community together,” Amale Andraos, a principal at WORKac, said in a press release.

Programs scheduled at the new branch include bilingual Drag Queen Story hour, virtual knitting and crocheting groups, and a performance by Moozika!, Jesse Goldman’s bilingual family music band.

“Adams Street is the first new library in Brooklyn in nearly four decades and a model for all public libraries in the decades to come,” Linda E. Johnson, president and CEO of Brooklyn Public Library, said.

“We’re grateful to our partners at WORKac for helping us realize a 21st-century library that’s both artful and accessible, beautiful and versatile, and we can’t wait for the entire DUMBO community to bring it to life.”

The $7.2 million project was funded by Mayor Bill de Blasio, Council Member Stephen Levin, and the New York State Education Department, as well as from proceeds from the redevelopment of the Brooklyn Heights Library. The library sold this branch to the Hudson Companies in 2014 for $52 million, making way for the 38-story condo building One Clinton.

Located at 9 Adams Street, the new library’s hours are 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, 1 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Tuesday, 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Thursday, and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday.


All photos by Gregg Richards

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