|City Librarian Luis Herrera, Library Commission president Jewell Gomez, and Hormel Center interim manager Karen undheim at the library right before it closed. Photo by Rink.
The Eureka Valley/Harvey Milk Memorial Branch Library closed for renovation on March 1. The branch hosted a celebratory closing party that day. The Jules Broussard Trio and other local favorites provided entertainment at this festive event. The community also honored former Library Commissioner Steve Coulter for his years of service to San Franciscoâ€™s libraries and the LGBT community. Prior to the closing party, the bookmobile made a special tour with stops at the Eureka Valley Recreation Center, the Baghdad CafĂ©, and the Castro Theater, where special guests performed at each stop and spoke about the renovation. For instance, The Temple of Poi dancers performed in front of the Castro Theater and later in front of the Milk Library.
Remarks were made by City Librarian Luis Herrera; Donna Bero, executive director of Friends of the SF Public Library; and Jewelle Gomez, president of the SF Public Library Commission. Certificates of recognition were given Coulter by Assemblyman Mark Leno, Supervisor Bevan Dufty, and Gomez.
Highlights of the branch renovation will include a small addition, new accessible restrooms, improved public and staff spaces, a designated Teen Area, a quiet reading area, more computers, better lighting, flexible spaces for programs, and new furniture, shelving, and materials displays. The project will cost about $5.4 million and is scheduled for completion in late 2009. The project is being designed by the San Francisco Bureau of Architectureâ€™s Library Design Studio and is managed by the Department of Public Works.
The Eureka Valley 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 three other branch libraries under construction - Noe Valley (reopening March 8), Richmond, and Portola. Ground will be broken on a new Ingleside Branch Library on Feb.15, and the Bernal Heights Branch will close for renovation on Feb. 9. 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, and Western Addition 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 campaign.
While the Eureka Valley Branch is under construction, the Library will provide the following temporary services effective March 8: bookmobile service on 16th Street, between Pond and Prosper, in front of the branch, with hours of operation: Tuesdays, 3:30â€“7 p.m. and Saturdays, 1â€“5 p.m; weekly story-times will be held at the Eureka Valley Recreation Center at 100 Collingwood St.; Infants and Toddlers Lapsits: Wednesdays at 3 p.m.; Preschool Storytime: Wednesdays at 3:45 p.m.; hold materials not picked up by the branch closing date will be routed to the Mission Branch, 300 Bartlett (at 24th Street). Patrons can designate an alternate pickup location through the Libraryâ€™s web site, or make the request at the service desk of any branch. Call (415) 557-4353 for information on temporary library services during the Eureka Valley Branchâ€™s closure; (415) 557-4343 for information on the Bookmobile; or visit the Libraryâ€™s web site at www.sfpl.org.