4 Free Library branches closed for major renovations

Free Library
Rendering of the planned renovation for Lovett Memorial Library.

Four Free Library of Philadelphia branches are closing this fall for major renovations.

Construction began this month at the Lillian Marrero (601 W. Lehigh Ave. in Fairhill) and Lovett Memorial (6945 Germantown Ave. in East Mount Airy) libraries. Work starts Oct. 3 at the Logan (1333 Wagner Ave. in Logan) and Tacony (6742 Torresdale Ave. in Tacony) branches.

Lillian Marrero library rendering

The library system said construction is slated to finish in late March at Logan, in late May at Lillian Marrero and Tacony, and in late June at Lovett Memorial.

It's not yet known how soon the libraries will be reopened to the public after the construction work is completed.

Tacony library rendering

"It takes at least a few months for us to add crucial installations such as furniture, computers, books, and other materials," the library said in a blog post this week. "We will announce public opening dates as construction draws to a close."

 alt= Logan library rendering

The renovations are part of the Free Library's 21st Century Libraries Initiative. The system received a $25 million grant from the William Penn Foundation, the largest-ever to the library, to help pay for the project.

Also part of the initiative are renovations at the Central Library on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway and a new neighborhood branch in South Philadelphia.

The South Philadelphia Community Health and Literacy Center opened earlier this year at Broad and Morris Streets, combining library services with health care and recreation in one facility.

The other neighborhood branches undergoing work now will also have broader focuses when they reopen.

Lillian Marrero will focus on early childhood literacy, as well as reading skills and other services for immigrants. Logan's focus will be on family literacy. Lovett Memorial will serve as an all-age community center, and Tacony will focus on small businesses and entrepreneurs.