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A View From the Third Floor

Here’s Looking at June: A Renovation Update

PPL circulation desk has been relocated to the center of the library as part of the renovations.

Greetings, library friends,

As you may have seen from our photo and video posts on our Facebook and Instagram pages, renovations are moving right along here at your library. We are well into phase two of the project, with the air conditioners fully installed and the HVAC portion of the project completed by Cornerstone HVAC.

The circulation desk has found its new home in the center of the library, just at the base of the mezzanine staircase.  Formerly located to the left of the doorway when you entered the library, the crew from Northern Tier, out of Gouverneur, took the desk apart in sections and began reassembling it in its new location this week (April 6). My, what a difference it makes, having it under these marvelous high ceilings, rather than under what was formerly an auditorium balcony.

The former location of the circulation desk, at the library front entrance on Park Street is now vacant and will be the location of the young adults collection.

In addition, a new doorway in the mezzanine classroom has been created in order to access the hallway elevator.

The pilasters that are along the walls had degradation from age and the ornate tops were cracked. The gang at Northern Tier has done a beautiful job scraping away the old plaster and restoring them to a new glory.

Cracks in the pilasters came from the age of the plaster and is being restored.
Pilasters throughout the library have already been repaired.

Library staff has been moving shelving into the children’s area to line the now finished walls, getting it ever closer to its final stages of completion.

Work has also begun on the restoration of the ceiling with the filling of holes and sanding and opposite that, the carpets will soon be ready to be yanked up for the maple wood beneath to be restored.

But back to the ceilings, we are really excited to see the new chandeliers, some of which will be attached to a cable that can be raised and lowered by a switch on ground level, to help allow for the changing of bulbs and cleaning, which helps when you have ceilings that exceed 20 feet.

Ceiling repair and lighting installation are all part of the removal of the former drop ceiling. Chandeliers will be installed as part of the second phase of the renovations

Electricians are also at work, installing new lighting, replacing and altering wiring as needed and installing new outlets and switches.

While there has been no hard-and-fast reopening date, due to the pandemic altering the availability of materials and workflow, as well as natural work delays, we are hoping for a June reopening date. As we get closer to that date, we will be working together to figure out what kind of programs we can immediately welcome you into and are excited at the prospect of being able to be reopen at a time when we will be able to have our community come inside as opposed to us having to do curbside service.

Construction gear and scaffolding surround the main reading room of PPL while workers have covered all the already restored portions of the library. We’re looking to June for a completion date.

In the meantime, we will continue to provide online services, such as our recent virtual tour of the Frederic Remington Art Museum, thanks to our partnership with them which will also lead to a rotating exhibit here at the library once we are open. We also have informational Zoom presentations and conversations like the recent Insure New York presentation with David Bradford, New York State of Health certified navigator with the St. Lawrence Health Initiative, about affordable health insurance in a time where insurance has seen mandated changes due to Covid 19.

We are also continuing our PPL on the Outside Program which not only provides outdoor adventures through our partnership with the ADK Mountain Club but also brings some of the outside to you through GoPro videos and interviews such as with our new Birds of Prey Program featuring Mark Manske (and his many birds) of Adirondack Raptors.

And, of course, as new books are written by our local and regional authors, like our interview with Tim Strong, owner of Birch Bark Books in Parishville, about his debut novel Whippoorwill Chronicles. as well as visiting authors, we will continue to host conversations online with them.

As always, there will always be opportunities for you, our community, to engage with our guests.

If you have any questions, reach out to us at info@potsdamlibrary.orgFor more information on our various programs, visit our blog page at https://potsdamlibrary.org/blog/

Hope to see you all in June and happy Spring,

Your Adult Program Coordinator,

William “W.T.” Eckert