Atlas Park library will not reopen 1

The library at The Shops at Atlas Park in Glendale will not reopen, as the lease ended in September and was not extended. Construction on the library at 73rd Place, about 10 blocks away, is anticipated to be completed by the spring.

The library at The Shops at Atlas Park in Glendale will not reopen.

Its lease expired at the end of September and was not extended due to the pandemic.

The site opened in May 2018 because of construction on the library about 10 blocks away at 78-60 73 Place. Work on the 73rd Place location is anticipated to be completed by spring 2021, according to a library spokesperson. A reopening date will depend on the state of the pandemic.

“We will continue to monitor the situation closely to determine when it is safe to reopen the branch and what services we can provide to the public at the time, with the health of our staff and customers at the forefront of that decision,” the spokesperson said.

All Queens libraries were closed in March in the early days of the coronavirus crisis. While several branches reopened in July with limited “to-go” service and others are accepting returns at external machines while remaining closed to the public, the Atlas Park branch was on neither list.

State Sen. Joe Addabbo Jr. (D-Howard Beach) helped bring the library to the Glendale mall but acknowledged it is “not the most optimum time” to continue with the temporary site.

“I think it comes down to fiscal savings for the library,” he said, adding, “None of our libraries are truly operating at their full capacity due to COVID and that’s disheartening. Hopefully, obviously, there are better days ahead.”

Mobile service was the original plan for Glendale during construction on the 73rd Place site but Addabbo, Councilman Bob Holden (D-Middle Village) and Community Board 5 worked on finding a storefront spot.

Addabbo told the Chronicle in 2018 that the idea of using Atlas Park came from CB 5 Libraries Committee Chairwoman Sarah Feldman. The Glendale renovations were expected to last 18 months.

Perhaps in a few months, Glendale residents can return to the library.

“There’s certainly no road map or blueprint for this COVID. If we play it out that may be about the time where people are actually going out,” Addabbo said.

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