Temporary library set to open in Central Phoenix

- A new temporary library aims to make it easier for people in Central Phoenix to access services.

This temporary library was set up after devastating storm-related damages forced the closure of the Burton Barr Library back in July. Due to a faulty fire-suppression system caused flooding on all five floors, the library suffered $10 million in damages.

The Phoenix Public Library is working hard to open the doors of this new temporary branch. Officials said even though there are several other library locations, something had to be done for those who don't have an option to go outside of Central Phoenix.

A 35,000 square foot space at the Park Central Mall is the site of the makeshift library.

"We needed to make sure that we had a space that could handle the ebb and flow of traffic, vehicles," said Lee Franklin with the Phoenix Public Library. "We wanted to be close to public transportation, which we are, we're right off the light rail."

The new branch is located in the basement of the mall, and it will have almost everything the Burton Barr Library had, with a few exceptions.

"With computers for public access to the internet, about 50,000 items available for checkout, plus a whole host of programming for early education to coding to an out-of-school space for teens," said Franklin.

The temporary location will be open 7 days a week, with similar hours to those at Burton Barr. Meanwhile, Burton Barr is expected to re-open during the summer of 2018.

Until then, however, the library employees will be keeping busy getting the branch up and running.

Franklin: "About 50,000 items to start with so we'll see how the ebb and flow goes. We can always add more as we go on."     

This new temporary branch is supposed to be open January 5, and there's an open house set for January 13.

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