Tom Scocca · 05/08/14 04:20PM

The New York Public Library has abandoned its plan to hollow out its central building and eliminate its research stacks. It was undone by critical and public opposition, and possibly by the fact that the whole scheme—for which Sir Norman Foster took home $7.9 million regardless—was structurally unfeasible.

The New York Times Declares War on the New York Public Library

Tom Scocca · 01/30/13 04:48PM

This plan from the New York Public Library to have Sir Norman Foster gut its beloved central building and rework it, getting rid of the pesky "books" there in the process, all in the name of modernization and The People and prudent money-management—Michael Kimmelman, holder of the office of New York Times architecture critic, has reviewed the plan, and he has delivered the verdict, and the verdict is: DEATH. The library and its "celebrity architect," Kimmelman writes, have cooked up a plan for a "money pit," an "Alamo of engineering" that will pointlessly deform a vital and important structure to no good or useful end.

NYC's Top Librarian Caught Drunk Driving in Reverse

Seth Abramovitch · 11/08/11 03:52AM

Like thousands of New Yorkers, Dr. Anthony Marx, the 52-year-old president of the New York Public Library, was massively inconvenienced on Sunday by marathon road closures. No problemo! He just threw his Audi A4 (registered to the library) into reverse, floored it — and slammed it into a garbage truck on East 138th St.

Steve Schwarzman Has a New Enemy

cityfile · 12/16/09 01:33PM

Last May, billionaire financier Steve Schwarzman made a $100 million donation to the New York Library. The gift, which followed more than a year of blistering press coverage (remember: never let a Journal reporter into your home and allow him/her to interview the household help!) wasn't without one big string: The library's Beaux-Arts main branch on 42nd Street and Fifth Avenue had to be renamed in the Blackstone Group co-founder's honor. It's been more than a year since then, but clearly some people have no intention of ever calling it the "Schwarzman Building."

Norman Foster Picked for NYPL Renovation

cityfile · 10/23/08 08:48AM

Famed British architect Norman Foster has been picked to handle the renovation of the New York Public Library on Fifth Avenue. "It's the greatest project ever," Foster told the Times in an interview. Since the building is a landmark, "its exterior, including its strip windows, will not be altered." One other thing that will also not be altered: The fact that Steve Schwarzman's name is engraved at the library's entrance. New York Public Library president Paul LeClerc says it will continue to be "noted discreetly on its facade." [NYT]

Maggie · 11/30/07 03:03PM

Oh, New York Public Library, with your commission of understated and nuanced portraits of the characters our modern times. If you're going to put a big ol' bullseye that says "Tap Me" smack dab in the middle of the Rose Reading Room, at least Photoshop Cheney into a cleavage-baring scarlet saloon number.

George Soros Asks Questions To Which He Knows The Answers

Sheila · 11/08/07 01:45PM

The New York Public Library held a day-long event called "Orwell Comes to America" yesterday, a series of discussions to"diagnose the symptoms of propaganda and misinformation" in media—especially when it comes to politics and the shaping of public thought. I visited the one about the science of manipulation, moderated by Nick Lemann, the dean of Columbia's J-School who also sometimes writes for The New Yorker, though without distinction. Have you heard? War is the new Peace!

Gossip Roundup: Ellen DeGeneres in Boring Car Crash

Jessica · 09/05/06 11:30AM

• Ellen DeGeneres is in a car crash (not caused by paparazzi, for once), making for excellent online advertising opportunities. [TMZ]
• Lloyd Grove survives Labor Day, reports that Jessica Simpson is even more of a whore than previously believed. The melanin princess collected assloads of swag and a $50K Chrysler convertible — though the latter will be donated to charity, as homegirl doesn't drive domestic. [Lowdown]
• The New York Public Library and fashion don't mix. Specifically, literacy clashes with Anna Wintour's McQueen tartans. [Page Six]
Showgirls scribe Joe Eszterhas goes out on a limb and calls Val Kilmer an "imbecile" and Michael Douglas "not brilliant." [R&M]
• Julia Roberts' BO would be a standout contribution to the world of celebrity perfumes. [Page Six]

NYPL Keeps Whiny Old Ladies From Facing 21st Century

Jesse · 06/19/06 10:01AM

And so you ask yourself, who — in this era of Google and Nexis and online dictionaries and encyclopedias — who would ever bother to use an old-fashioned reference librarian anymore, let alone the New York Public Library's vaunted — and, as it turns out, not-yet-eliminated — telephone reference service? The Times knows:

Scenes from a Library

Jesse · 08/16/05 11:30AM

The Donnell Library Center on West 53rd Street (which offers sweet, sweet free WiFi), just moments ago: