The Ypsilanti District Library celebrated the grand opening of their newest Superior Branch on November 14, with over 200 visitors who came out to explore the facility.
The ribbon-cutting ceremony was commemorated by Patricia Horne McGee, the President of the library board, along with Library Director Lisa Hoenig, Branch Manager Mary Garboden, and members of the library board.
The Superior Branch had been in the planning stages for nearly fifteen years. What was meant to serve as a temporary location became a long-term site when building plans were put on hold in 2008.
“We wanted to provide much better service to the surrounding neighborhoods and the rest of our district,” said Stacey Palazzolo, adult librarian. “This area needed a community center where patrons could attend storytimes, STEM activities, receive homework help, and attend computer classes and other interesting programs. Not only that, but we’ve been able to increase the number of accessible materials for check-out to 15,000 items. We also have a Library of Things where practical items, such as tools, can be checked out to support the endeavors our patrons pursue.”
The library was designed with input from community members to meet the needs of the patrons. It features a large meeting room for hosting library programs, along with group study rooms that utilize white boards and videoconferencing technology. A fireplace with nature-inspired Motawi tile surround offers an ideal spot to curl up with a book. Outside, there are raised garden beds and a patio, along with a drive-up book return. The building also features solar panels that will generate electricity to cover the building’s energy needs.
A space for kids to explore
Families of young children will appreciate the designated kids’ area.
“The kids’ area offers 6 computers, 2 iPads, a much larger book collection, and interactive play areas for the little ones,” Palazzolo said. “Interactive activities such as the art stations and scavenger hunts will change so that there’s always an engaging activity for kids who visit the library.”
Local teens will enjoy their new space as well.
“Our teen area provides a comfortable area for teens to read, study and socialize. They can check out Chromebooks or use one of the 5 desktop computers for teen,” Palazzolo said.
Teens wishing to have input on programming should stay tuned for opportunities in the future.
“The YDL-Superior location is in the process of forming a Teen Advisory Group which will be the driving force for the teen programs and services we offer,” Palazzolo added.
The library plans to begin offering a variety of events and programs in the new year.
“After a period of settling in, in January we are super excited for our first round of library programs,” Palazzolo said. “This will include our MLK Day celebration with local artist Akili Jackson. We’ll have an ESL tutoring group, aspiring writers can attend the YpsiWrites writer’s room. We’ll have weekly storytimes, and we’ll have the Phil Hale Jazz Quartet performing. We are also planning more programs, and invite the community to make suggestions for what they would like to experience.”