Skip to contents
Hyde Park, Woodlawn, South Shore

South Shore Branch Library To Reopen Soon After Year Of Renovations

Work on the library's $2.5 million renovation is complete, a library spokesperson confirmed. The library will reopen this weekend or next week.

A construction worker exits the South Shore branch library on Sept. 16, 2019.
Maxwell Evans/Block Club Chicago
  • Credibility:

SOUTH SHORE — The South Shore branch library will reopen after nearly a year of closure, Chicago Public Library officials said Tuesday.

The branch’s $2.5 million renovation project, ongoing since March, has been completed, Chicago Public Library spokesperson Patrick Molloy said.

All that remains is to restock the library with books and furniture, which will be done in the coming days, Molloy said. Once that’s finished, the branch will re-open — either this weekend or next week.

The 90-year-old building will house a new YOUmedia lab and recording studio for teens and young adults.

A teacher will be on-staff five days a week from 3-6 p.m. to provide homework help. Dedicated “technology tutors” for adults will teach basic computer skills and help patrons apply for jobs online.

Renovations to the 18,000-square foot space include:

  • A new early learning area.
  • A dedicated area for young adults.
  • Upgrades to exterior walkways, the roof and windows.
  • A new circulation desk, flooring and paint.

“It’s important that we modernize something that has stood the test of time for 90 years,” former Mayor Rahm Emanuel said at a February 2019 press conference announcing the project.

A community celebration will follow the library’s re-opening, according to Molloy.

“We just want to get patrons to start coming in again, instead of having a celebration before people realize the library’s open again,” he said.

Several Little Free Libraries have popped up in South Shore in recent months, expanding access to free books in the neighborhood.

Do stories like this matter to you? Subscribe to Block Club Chicago. Every dime we make funds reporting from Chicago’s neighborhoods.

Already subscribe? Click here to support Block Club with a tax-deductible donation.