The Queens Library boasted the largest circulation of any public library system in the nation last year — and may be on track to earning the top spot again this year.
The borough’s 63-branch library system ranked number one in circulation in fiscal year 2006, with 20.2 million items loaned, according to data released Monday by the American Public Library Association. The tally is expected to jump to 21 million in fiscal year 2007, which ended on June 30.
The library’s executive director Thomas Galante attributed last year’s record circulation to a hardworking library staff that, he says, has gone above and beyond the call of duty to give top-notch service to patrons.
The library system’s “greatest asset goes home at night: its staff,” he said. “They are genuinely concerned about helping customers access everything the library has to offer: finding a useful Web site, completing a homework assignment, learning how to use a computer or recommending a novel they’ll stay up all night to finish.”
The Queens Library serves an average of 55,000 visitors every day and offers more than 6 million items for loan. The libraries system boasts titles in 30 different languages and offers thousands of educational programs through six adult learning centers.
New York City’s other public library’s ranked high in circulation last year as well: Brooklyn public libraries placed fifth while New York public libraries placed seventh, with each boasting over 15 million items.
The Multnomah County Public Library in in Portland, Ore., circulated the second highest number of loan items in the nation: nearly 19.6 million.