News Release - April 29, 2008

For Immediate Release: April 29, 2008 Contact: Marcia Schneider (415) 557-4252 [Potrero Branch Closing for Renovation May 17th] The Potrero Branch Library, located at 1616 20th Street (near Connecticut), will close for renovation on Saturday, May 17. The branch will host a celebratory closing party at 1 p.m. that day. Fun, food and entertainment will be provided. Renovation highlights include an expanded second floor with downtown city views, a designated teen area, and an accessible program room for after-hours access. There will be two floors of public space with collections on both floors. There will be more computers with access to the Internet, improved lighting, heating and ventilation, new furniture, and a variety of seating choices. There will be public art and wall space for neighborhood displays. The renovation will also include accessible restrooms, making the branch fully accessible to all. The project will cost approximately $4.5 million and is scheduled for completion in 2010. The project is being designed by the San Francisco Bureau of Architecture's Library Design Studio and is managed by the Department of Public Works. The Potrero renovation is part of a major capital improvement project-the largest in San Francisco Public Library history-backed by voters who passed a $106 million bond measure in November 2000. Currently, there are five other branch libraries under construction-Richmond, Portola, Ingleside, Bernal Heights and Eureka Valley. The Branch Library Improvement Program calls for the renovation of 17 branch libraries and the construction of seven new library buildings. So far, the renovated Excelsior, West Portal, Sunset, Marina, Western Addition and Noe Valley branches have reopened, and the Glen Park Branch has moved into a new building. The construction of the brand-new Mission Bay Branch, opened on July 8, 2006, was also part of this building campaign. While the Potrero Branch is under construction, the Library will provide the following temporary services starting a few weeks after the closing: *Library Services at nearby branches: Mission Bay Branch, 960 Fourth St. (at Berry), (415) 355-2838; Mission Branch, 300 Bartlett St. (at 24th), (415 355-2800; the Main Library, 100 Larkin St. (at Grove), (415) 557-4400. *Bookmobile service will be located at 1502 Mariposa Street (at Arkansas) adjacent to the Jackson Recreation Center. Hours of operation: Tuesdays from 2:30 - 5 p.m., Thursdays from 12 - 2:30 p.m. Bookmobile service will start up on Tuesday May 27th at 2:30 p.m. *Weekly Preschool Story-time (ages birth-5) at 10:30 am will be held at the Saint Teresa Church Community Room located on Connecticut Street at 19th. Enter via the entrance on Connecticut near the corner. Story times will start up at this location on Thursday May 22nd at 10:30 am. *Hold materials not picked up by the branch closing date will be routed to the Mission Branch Library. Patrons can designate an alternate pickup location through the Library's Web site, or make the request at the service desk of any branch. Please call (415) 557-4353 for information on temporary library services during the Potrero Branch's closure; (415) 557-4343 for information on the Bookmobile; or visit the Library's web site at History of the Potrero Branch Potrero Branch Library was the 22nd branch established in the San Francisco Public Library system and has a history that dates back to the 1890s. One of the earliest branch locations was at 1126 Kentucky Street. That facility was closed in 1902 and replaced by a "library station." In 1909-1910 the station was located at 19th Street and Kentucky. In September 1918, the station was moved to a room in the old Daniel Webster School. In 1919 the station location was on Connecticut Street near 20th Street, and later that year it was moved to 448 Connecticut Street. The present-day branch building, which was opened to the public on June 25, 1951, was designed by the architectural firm of Pollack & Pope. The cost of the building was $97,168 and of the land, $3,260. Building better libraries for stronger communities!

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