2001 was a noteworthy year for your library on a number of fronts. Library patrons continue to use the facility at very high levels. A record number of library materials were loaned to customers during the year. 447,000 books, compact discs, videos, DVDS, audiobooks, puzzles, and other items is a load - but remember, a nearly equal number of materials were returned. When you add in the items from neighboring libraries that are returned to Teaneck and thus must be packaged for shipment, the grand total of items handled numbers over one million. Your library rivals Amazon.com!
Some statistical highlights: in March, the Library had a Sunday when 2,633 items were loaned - a record for that day of the week. That's almost nine items loaned per minute. At year end, the Library loaned more than five thousand music compact discs in a month for the first time. Teaneck has one of the largest and finest CD collections in the State. Approximately 43% of all materials loaned come from the Children's Department. The investment in Children's Services at the Library is vital and ongoing.
Renovations commenced during 2001 and plans were made to continue the overhaul in 2002. In April, installation of a new circulation desk, a new security corridor and telecommunications equipment were completed. The volume of activity outlined above made the new desk a necessity just so staff could maneuver. A lighting project in the courtyard was completed during the same month that prepared the space for additional renovations. During Thanksgiving week, much of the first floor and mezzanine levels were re-carpeted. Collections were relocated, particularly in the Children's Department. There new, lower shelving enhanced the appearance and made possible more face-out display of books. At year-end, new furnishings were on order and projects to complete new public restrooms, replacement windows, and a new staff lounge were being finalized.
When all is said and done, the Library will have closed for a total of 2 1/2 days. The total cost of all renovations will come in under $400,000. We hope you will feel that this represents good value and will keep it in mind when comparing library projects in neighboring communities.
On the technology front, the Bergen County Cooperative Library System, or BCCLS, welcomed the Glen Ridge Library as its 73rd member. Your Teaneck library card may be used throughout the system, and, with the addition of a sticker, in Morris and Passaic County libraries as well. By obtaining a PIN number at the Library's front desk, one may have access to online periodical databases (www.bccls.org) and one can check the status of your library account and renew library materials online. More and more people are taking advantage of these services and the ability to place requests for materials 24/7. The library's own web site (www.teaneck.org) continued to expand the depth of historical materials and information about library services. We hope you will visit both regularly.
The Children's Department welcomed Amy Sears as new Supervising Librarian. Ms. Sears came to Teaneck from the Brooklyn Public Library. The Summer Reading Club program involved over 950 Teaneck youngsters reading new and old favorites.