Oct. 22, 2019 By Allie Griffin
Construction of a new Rego Park library to replace the current library building will begin in 2021, four years after the plan was first announced.
Construction of a library twice the size of the one built in 1975 at 91-41 63rd Dr is anticipated to begin in the fall 2021 and to be completed in spring 2024, according to the City’s Department of Design and Construction (DDC).
The $38-million project was first announced in 2017 by Mayor Bill de Blasio and Council Member Karen Koslowitz.
Koslowitz has been fighting for a new library building since the 1990s and she will finally see construction of the planned two-story, 18,000-square-foot library begin right before she retires from City Council.
She told community members at a Queens Community Board 6 meeting earlier this month that she was told “that the library groundbreaking is going to happen before I retire. It’s going to happen,” reported the Queens Chronicle.
Koslowitz will retire when her term is up in 2021 — just in time to see the library groundbreaking. She is ineligible to run again due to term limits.
The current Rego Park library is just 7,500 square feet, lacks ADA accessibility and has outdated technology. Local officials said it’s too small to support the growing community.
Koslowitz previously said that it’s one of the most heavily utilized branches in her district. In 2016, it had a circulation of nearly 194,000 and 189,000 visitors.
“Words cannot express how happy and grateful I am that the Rego Park Library expansion will now become a reality,” Koslowitz said in a statement in 2017 following the project’s announcement. “I have been working on providing the residents of Rego Park with an enhanced library structure since the 1990’s and finally it’s happening.”