January 9, By Hannah Wulkan
The long-anticipated Hunters Point Library is scheduled to open toward the end of the summer, Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer announced on Facebook Friday.
According to Van Bramer, he toured the facility along with Queens Library CEO Dennis Walcott and New York City Department of Design and Construction Commissioner Feniosky Pena-Mora Friday morning to get an update on the project.
“The library is scheduled for a late summer opening but I’ll be checking in periodically to mark the progress personally,” Van Bramer, who has been active in helping to fund the new library and bringing it to fruition, wrote on Facebook. “When completed, this library will be a beacon of learning and a tremendous civic space.”
The library opening comes after a long process riddled with delays. Work was initially supposed to begin in 2013, but after issues with the budget and a redesigning of the building, the city finally broke ground on the $38 million project in May 2015.
Van Bramer said last July that the library would open in the first part of 2017, saying in a statement, “Next spring, the library should be open and bustling with children and families eager to learn.”
However, library officials maintain that the project is not delayed, and was always supposed to open later on in the year.
“The original DDC completion date for the Hunters Point Library building was Fall 2017. Because of good progress in the construction schedule, we now anticipate that we will be able to turn the building over to the Queens Library this summer,” said spokesman for the NYC Department of Design and Construction Ian Michaels.
Queens Library spokeswoman agreed, saying “We have consistently said, at least since Dennis [Walcott] has been here, that the library would open in the summer of 2017.” Walcott was named Queens Library CEO in March of 2016.