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The North Riverside Public Library, closed for the past three weeks, reopened yesterday, unveiling its new lower-level Youth Services Department and reconfigured main floor featuring an expanded area for young adults.
While construction is still wrapping up downstairs, the public areas for the new 6,500-square-foot Youth Services Department are open. Construction on the lower-level began in June.
Initially, Library Director Robert Lifka said, the library closed Oct. 21 and was expected to be closed a week during the relocation of the youth services materials to the lower level. However, the week stretched into two and then finally three before construction crews finished their work.
The new area features new shelving for books and audio-visual materials, new offices, more computers, two group study rooms, a storytime room and additional storage. Upstairs the reference department has been moved into the old Youth Services area and the Young Adult Department has been expanded.
The library has also hired three part-time staffers to work in the new Youth Services Department.
"That will make more people available for more patron services," said Susan Locander, the library's Youth Services administrator, "whether it's for programming or in the stacks."