Woodland Park library could double in size with funding

Sam Fried

To some, brick-and-mortar libraries may be anachronisms from the 20th century. But to many in Woodland Park —  parents, children, seniors, new immigrants — the Alfred H. Baumann Free Public Library is a godsend. “We are not so skeptical in Woodland Park,” said Mayor Keith Kazmark.  The library’s after-school programs are a lifesaver for parents, a […]

To some, brick-and-mortar libraries may be anachronisms from the 20th century. But to many in Woodland Park —  parents, children, seniors, new immigrants — the Alfred H. Baumann Free Public Library is a godsend.

“We are not so skeptical in Woodland Park,” said Mayor Keith Kazmark. 

The library’s after-school programs are a lifesaver for parents, a place where kids get the extra help they need. 

“Our librarians know all their school assignments,” Library Director Linda Hoffman said.

“We’ve commingled the library and school resources,” said Christine Tiseo, Woodland Park’s Board of Education president. 

The library is also a key resource as an ESL provider and helps people returning to the workforce gain computer knowledge. 

“Over the last 20 years we have become the community center,” Hoffman said. 

“Our issue is space,” she added. “It is so limited.” 

Word that Woodland Park would receive a $2.9 million grant means that the borough plans to move forward with plans to essentially double the size of its library. Here is a shot of current and somewhat cramped interior.

Good news came in January when Gov. Phil Murphy’s administration announced a second round of grants for libraries that will give about $37 million to 36 libraries, stemming from the Library Construction Bond Act voters approved in 2017. 

The act authorizes $125 million in state bonds for technology updates, building improvements and other library projects across the state.

The first round of funding, which allocated $87.5 million, was announced in January 2020. Although initially unsuccessful, Woodland Park reapplied last June. 


https://www.northjersey.com/story/news/passaic/woodland-park/2022/01/30/woodland-park-nj-library-size-double-funding/9243712002/

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