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The New York Public Library’s Rose Main Reading to Reopen in Late Fall 2016

NEW YORK, NY — The New York Public Library’s historic Rose Main Reading Room and Bill Blass Catalog Room will reopen by late fall 2016 – several months ahead of the prior schedule.

The rooms – located on the third floor of the Library’s iconic Stephen A. Schwarzman Building on Fifth Avenue and 42nd Street – were temporarily closed in May 2014 after a large rosette fell from the Reading Room ceiling overnight while the building was closed.

The Library conducted a full-scale inspection of the ceiling, which required the construction of special scaffolding because of its 52-foot height. WJE Engineers & Architects, P.C. determined that the ceiling – opened in 1911 with the rest of the building – is strong and in very good condition.

“We discovered in the course of our inspection that the ceiling is really in excellent shape, especially considering its age,” said Eric Hammarberg, associate principal at the firm. “It was truly robustly constructed, and it is a pleasure to work with it up close.”

Still, out of an abundance of caution, the Library decided to reinforce all 180 large and medium rosettes with steel cables. It will also restore the mural in the Bill Blass Catalog Room, which was not part of a restoration of the Reading Room completed in 1998.

The work was previously expected to be completed in early 2017. While the historic room is closed, all General Research Division services are available on the Schwarzman Building’s second floor corridor, where, to accommodate researchers, the Library opened several rooms that had previously been closed to the public.

Media Contact: Angela Montefinise | angelamontefinise@nypl.org

About The New York Public Library
The New York Public Library is a free provider of education and information for the people of New York and beyond. With 92 locations—including research and branch libraries—throughout the Bronx, Manhattan, and Staten Island, the Library offers free materials, computer access, classes, exhibitions, programming and more to everyone from toddlers to scholars, and has seen record numbers of attendance and circulation in recent years. The New York Public Library serves more than 18 million patrons who come through its doors annually and millions more around the globe who use its resources at www.nypl.org. To offer this wide array of free programming, The New York Public Library relies on both public and private funding. Learn more about how to support the Library at nypl.org/support.

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