Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped to receive major state grant
State grant will assist with funding large renovation project
A major renovation project Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh’s Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped has been selected to receive a major state grant, state Rep. Sara Innamorato, D-Lawrenceville, announced today.
The $750,000 grant will help fund a $2.7 million renovation project to the library’s interior and exterior, to provide more comfortable and easily navigable accommodations and spaces for patrons with visual or physical challenges.
“Libraries are about creating equitable spaces for all our neighbors,” Innamorato said. “By supporting an update to these facilities, we’re supporting the accessible and inclusive work of Carnegie Library staff by helping them create a more accessible and inclusive physical space where everyone can feel at home with a book.”
The library includes two studios to create book recordings that are then made available to more than 15,000 local, regional or international patrons. Updating the library’s interior and exterior will increase opportunities for people with physical challenges to become more connected with the library and the community and allow the library to continue to grow to serve more individuals.
“We are grateful to the Commonwealth for investing in Pennsylvania’s libraries,” said Mary Frances Cooper, president and director of Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh. “LBPH reach extends far beyond Allegheny County, providing Pennsylvania residents who are unable to read standard sized print, unable to hold a book or turn pages, or who have a physically based reading disability, with a wide range of audio books, magazines and described video at no cost. Through these services and resources, residents of all abilities, skills and backgrounds have equal access to materials and learning opportunities.”
The grant announced was one of 19 awarded across the commonwealth through the state Department of Education’s Keystone Library Grant program. Keystone grants are competitive grants funded through the Keystone Recreation, Park and Conservation Fund. Grants of up to $750,000 may be used for planning, acquisition, construction and rehabilitation of public libraries, and must be matched dollar-for-dollar.