Friends of Seattle Public Library Blog

The goings on of the Seattle Public Library.

Beacon Hill Library Helps Neighborhood Attract National Attention October 5, 2012

Patrons entering the popular Beacon Hill branch Library

Beacon Hill is one of America’s top neighborhoods according to the American Planners Association (APA) .  Top 10 Great Neighborhoods for 2012 exemplify “exceptional character and highlight the role planning and planners  play in adding value to communities, including fostering economic growth and creating jobs,”  the APA writes in their October 1 announcement of the award. Beacon Hill was chosen specifically because of its “ethnic and architectural diversity, scenic vistas, history and amenities.” Lyle Bicknell of the Seattle Department of Planning and Developement cited Beacon Hill Library and the Beacon Hill Light Rail station as important components driving the decision in his comments to KOMO radio news.

The Beacon Hill branch Library, situated half a block from the Light Rail station, offers Homework help 4-8 p.m. Tuesday thru Friday,  Beginning ESL classes, Toddler, Family and Preschool Storytimes, and Bi-Lingual Play and Learn groups that strengthen and reflect the diverse community. In addition the Library hosts large groups in its spacious meeting room, presents one time programs such as Health Care Counseling  for Mandarin, Cantonese and English speakers, and hosts the Beacon Hill Resource Center maintained by Beacon Hill Merchants.

Washington artist Miles Pepper’s kinetic boat sculpture rises above the entry to Beacon Hill branch Library.

The Beacon Hill Branch Library garnered two of its own national awards in 2005 and 2003. It was one of 100 most “noteworthy personalities, places  and extraordinary objects in the world of innovative design,”  according to Metropolitan Home in 2005 just one year after it opened. In 2003, Seattle Design Commission recognized it for Design Excellence citing “bold, modern design.”

In a Friends of The Seattle Public Library profile of Beacon Hill patron Tess Martin she notes, ” Beacon Hill is very diverse, and there are few places where all the different populations can mingle. The library is a great place for that.” Users on Yelp give consistently high ratings to Beacon Hill branch citing great staff, wide and diverse collections, ample parking, and user friendly modern design. Libraries contribute to the quality of our lives and they anchor our neighborhoods. Congratulations to the Beacon Hill branch library for its role in bringing national recognition to Beacon Hill Neighborhood.

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