The children’s librarian hosted storytime, organized arts and crafts activities, and handed out cookies.
“The response was overwhelmingly positive,” Chang said. “The customers, the parents, they were just so happy that we were finally there, that we’re opening the doors.”
The $41.5 million, 22,000-square-foot library on the East River waterfront officially opened its doors on September 24. Chang said it’s been an exciting experience putting together all 50,000 items in their collection–– including books, magazines, movies, albums and more –– and preparing the site for the grand opening.
“It’s a new experience for everyone in this building,” she said. “There has never been a library here.
“Even though we’ve worked in different libraries before, and we have experience providing services to the community, it’s our first time here,” Chang added. “That’s what makes it unique.”
Despite a “huge amount of support” from the community, Chang said the project had its detractors. She noted that there were many articles and online comments about the delays and setbacks the project suffered.
“People can be trolls,” Chang said. “All the negative naysayers, if they have a legitimate complaint, I’d be more than happy to speak to them and help them with an issue.”
But Chang is now focused on serving the growing Hunters Point and Long Island City neighborhoods. She said she hopes the library truly becomes part of the community.
“We are Queens Public Library,” she said. “Our doors are open for everyone.”