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Chicago Tool Library Finds A New Home On The West Side, Plans To Open There In Early 2023

A co-founder said the space is nearly five times as big as the original location in Bridgeport — and it's perfect for housing more tools and hosting workshops.

After operating out of 1048 W. 37th St. in Bridgeport, The Chicago Tool Library is moving to a much larger space in East Garfield Park.
Provided/Chicago Tool Library
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BRIDGEPORT — The Chicago Tool Library will have a new home in the city next year.

The nonprofit at 1048 W. 37th St. in Bridgeport has been searching for a bigger space for months since its tool collection has grown rapidly and the organizers, said co-founder Tessa Vierk. Operations will completely move early next year to a warehouse at 4015 W. Carroll Ave. in East Garfield Park, Vierk said.

The library, which started in 2019, allows Chicagoans to check out all kinds of tools on a temporary basis so they don’t have to buy them.

The Bridgeport location has served them well, but the library’s catalog has grown substantially over the years. It recently merged with Chicago Community Tools, a nonprofit tool-lending program, which brought in an additional 5,000 tools, Vierk previously said.

Vierk said the location meets all of their needs: It’s an expansive space, public-transit accessible and even has a small outdoor courtyard.

“People are stoked,” Vierk said. “We have a lot of really big fans, and so I was a little nervous about moving to the West Side from the South Side that people might be disappointed or frustrated about having to travel further, but we really haven’t gotten that.”

Vierk said business will continue at their current location until about the end of October. The group plans to close up shop during November and December to move everything over to the new space to be ready at the start of 2023.

Chicago Tool Library is fundraising to support the move and the large increase in rent for the new space. Anyone interested in helping can find information on its website.

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