Parkway Central Library
Parkway Central Library by Michael Barera on Wikimedia Commons (CC BY-SA 4.0)
Backstory and Context
The Parkway Central Library was opened in 1927 on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway. The neoclassical building was designed by Julian Abele, an African-American architect who worked in the architecture firm of Horace Trumbauer. High-density book storage was at the heart of the original design. Renovations by architect Moshe Safdie transformed some of this storage space into space for people to learn and work. The renovation and restoration work took over a decade and was completed in 2019.
There is a free tour of the library that begins in the lobby and goes through the many departments of the library like Philbrick Hall, Heim Center, Teen Center, etc. In addition to it's many departments, the Parkway Central Library has many events that engage the community like a French Language Learning Circle, GED Preparation, Author Talks, etc. Because of the current pandemic many of the programs like Storytimes, Read to a Therapy Dog, and even Yoga are now available virtually. The library consists of many more departments like the Map Collection, Culinary Literacy Center, Art Department, and Music Department. You can even borrow instruments on loan from the Music Department. This is a wonderful library with many great programs for all ages and is definitely worth a visit.
Free Library of Philadelphia. Parkway Central Library, 2020. Accessed December 14th 2020. https://libwww.freelibrary.org/locations/parkway-central-library.
Parkway Central Library. Parkway Central Library Welcomes You, 2019. Accessed December 14th 2020. https://libwww.freelibrary.org/assets/pdf/about/parkway-central-welcome-guide.pdf.