In its Jan. 3 meeting, Community Board 11 voted to approve the Library Committee’s approved plan for the reconstruction of the Douglaston-Little Neck branch of the Queens Public Library.
Recommended by the committee during its Dec. 21 meeting, the plan for the $25 million, 11,500-square-foot building effectively doubles the current, 1960s-era programming space, increasing multipurpose spaces, as well.
Also significant is the planned building’s LEED certification, made possible in part by the first-floor green roof and the second-floor rooftop garden. Those are topped off with greenery, a hummingbird garden, NYC bike racks and rain gardens in the so-called “entrance garden.”
“It looks beautiful,” said Benjamin Turner, chair of CB 11’s Transportation Committee. “It’s very bright. It’s a very modern-looking building, but it also has a warmth about it.”
Artist Misha Khan was commissioned to make various pieces for the building. Per the committee’s most recent report, said works will highlight elements of local history, to be complemented by the design’s “warm” gray and wood color scheme.
The plan was designed by BKSK Architects, a firm that specializes in the sustainable planning of civic buildings. It has designed other libraries in the past.
Plans for the new library began as early as December 2019, when the committee approved a motion to send a letter to the QPL requesting funding for the project.
As for next steps, construction will begin following a bidding process among interested contractors. The project is expected to begin in 2023, starting with the demolition of the current building. Further scheduling, however, is still up in the air — end date included, though former City Councilmember Paul Vallone said previously that the city is aiming for mid-2026. The committee expects detailed scheduling to unfold closer to construction.
Upon the vote’s conclusion, District Manager Joseph Marziliano proudly proclaimed: “Let’s go build a library.”