East Rockaway library set to undergo changes


The East Rockaway Public Library will be undergoing renovations starting in early 2019, when the library will be upgrading its facilities.

Over the summer, Library Director Mary Thorpe applied for a grant from the New York State Division of Library Development to renovate the library’s annex, which has remained vacant since the Recreation Department moved facilities. The Division of Library Development allocates funds for the Nassau County Library System, which then funds half of a grant. The Village of East Rockaway will fund the other half.

In the library’s application, Thorpe wrote that renovating the annex would provide the library with more space to hold programs. “It would be used for presentations, [and] the Fire Department could use it for trainings,” she told the Herald, adding that the library would install a new projector and sound system to screen movies.

To prepare the annex for these programs, construction crews have already started installing security cameras in the room, and have wired it for wifi and computer access. Thorpe said she expects the work to be completed over the next two weeks.

The Village of East Rockaway board of trustees also put out a Request for Proposals to renovate the bathroom in the annex, run wiring, soundproof the walls and add a separate entrance for the area. The entrance would be through the library, and library officials would have to move bookshelves and consolidate some of the reference books to install a door for the annex, Thorpe said.

The library is also using funds from a state grant secured by former State Sen. Dean Skelos, a Republican from Rockville Centre, to create a new young adult section. Currently, the library only has a hall for young adult books, but by the summer, teenagers will have a place in the front of the library to work and relax.

The teen area will feature new carpeting, furniture, computers and tables and chairs. “At this point, it’s mainly furniture that we’re buying,” Thorpe said, adding that it “will be a lot more color.”

Work on the young adult area is expected to begin in February.