July 2014

Reserve a Berkeley Public Library Community Meeting Room: Check out [spaces] a new meeting room reservation system

July 11, 2014

Contact: Ilan Eyman
Information Technology Department
Berkeley Public Library

Reserve a Berkeley Public Library Community Meeting Room
Check out [spaces] a new meeting room reservation system

Berkeley, July 11, 2014—The Berkeley Public Library is now offering online reservations for its free community meeting rooms. [spaces] is our new reservations software that makes reserving our community meeting rooms more convenient. [spaces] allows users to locate available meeting rooms and submit a request to use them online. Upon submission, users receive immediate email notification that the request was received followed by an email confirming or declining the request within a few days.

Berkeley based groups and organizations may reserve and use meeting rooms when not in use for Library or City events. Reservations must be made at a minimum of two weeks and a maximum of twelve weeks in advance. The free community meeting rooms are located at the Central Library, North Branch Library, South Branch Library and West Branch Library.

For a description of and other information about the four Berkeley Public Library’s community meeting rooms please go to http://www.berkeleypubliclibrary.org/library/meeting-rooms or call 510-9818-6195. All community meeting rooms are equipped with free Wi-Fi, tables, chairs, a podium and a projector. Presenters must bring their own laptops and cables. The community meeting rooms are only available during Library operating hours. Visit us at www.berkeleypublic.library.org


Berkeley Public Library Leads the Way With LEED Gold Certification for newly opened South Branch

July 10, 2014
Interior of South Branch. The room is daylight filled and cooled by clerestory windows and ceiling fans
Interior of South Branch. Photograph by David Wakely ©2013

Contact: Donna Corbeil
Library Director
Berkeley Public Library

Berkeley Public Library Leads the Way
With LEED Gold Certification for newly opened South Branch

Berkeley, July 10, 2014—The Berkeley Public Library South Branch and Tool Lending Library, that opened to great acclaim on May 11, 2013, has achieved LEED Gold certification for new construction. Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design (LEED) is a green building certification program that recognizes best-in-class sustainable building strategies and practices.

San Francisco architectural firm, Field Paoli, who designed the new South Branch Library, received official notification on June 20, 2014. Describing the design concept, Principal Avery Moor said, “We literally raised the roof, creating a 20-foot high central browsing room that brings daylight into the three reading rooms and shared cool air through operable clerestory windows and ceiling fans.”

To achieve LEED certification, building projects must satisfy environmental prerequisites and earn points to achieve different levels: Certified, Silver, Gold or Platinum. As part of its Climate Action Plan, the City of Berkeley requires all major remodels or new construction of City buildings to meet LEED Silver certification. The recently renovated Claremont Branch and North Branch Public Libraries each achieved LEED Silver.

For South Branch, the Berkeley Library, and Field Paoli decided to go further. It was a team effort,” says Neal de Snoo, Energy Program Office for the City’s Office of Energy and Sustainable Development. “In this project the Library demonstrated a major commitment to achieving the City’s climate action goal.”

Among the many sustainable building features are radiant floor heating, operable windows for most ventilation, abundant daylighting, energy efficient light fixtures and lighting controls, and water and energy efficient plumbing fixtures. Millwork incorporates sustainably harvested maple and reclaimed Monterey cypress woods. On the roof, photovoltaic panels offset 9.7% of the building's energy cost.  And around the site, permeable paving and bioswales are integrated with drought tolerant and regional landscaping to save water and reduce runoff.

In the midst of an economic recession and a national wave of libraries and other public services being reduced and shuttered, the Berkeley Public Library, the Berkeley Public Library Foundation, and Friends of the Berkeley Public Library bucked the trend with a successful campaign to voters and donors to expand and improve public facilities and benefits. “Beautiful public spaces and free, accessible methods for obtaining knowledge and exposure to arts, culture and literature reflect our values. We are thrilled to have sustainable ‘green’ library buildings designed to serve Berkeley for generations,” says Director of Library Services Donna Corbeil.

The Berkeley voters passed measure FF, a $26 million bond measure for the Branch Library Improvement Program, overwhelmingly in November 2008. Construction costs for the South Branch totaled $5 million. The Library expanded from 5,400 sq. ft. in the old building to 8,700 sq. ft. in the new, including a larger community meeting room with tall windows facing the street. Library spaces are warm and welcoming, and fully accessible, with more seating, technology and media choices.

The much-loved Tool Lending Library returned to a bigger space with more storage for their large tool collection and workshop space for staff to maintain and repair tools.

The General Contractor, Gonsalves & Stronck Construction Company of San Carlos, also achieved LEED points for diverting over 80% of construction waste from landfill, tracking material costs for recycled content, and making sure thresholds for low-emitting materials were not exceeded. They also refinished and reused hemlock ceiling boards from the original library. Kitchell contractors, construction manager for all four branch libraries, provided enhanced commissioning for the project.

The process did not stop with the construction and the opening of the Branch. The library committed to two years of purchased green power for the Branch. Green cleaning materials, recycling, and landscape maintenance without use of harmful chemicals, are part of the Berkeley Public Library's sustainable practices. To view real-time data on the South Branch Library’s CO2 impact and solar power yield go to http://www.sunnyportal.com/Templates/PublicPage.aspx?page=abc8867a-ea86-4fb1-b94e-8e10a46d547b.

Branch visitors will find several wall plaques, sporting a raised green leaf, sprinkled around the Library. These signs describe the “green” features located throughout the Library. For more information on the Library’s sustainable spaces go to http://www.berkeleypubliclibrary.org/locations/sustainable-spaces

The South Branch Library is located at 1901 Russell Street, Berkeley CA 94703, and is open: Monday, 10:00 am-6:00 pm, Tuesday and Wednesday, 10:00 am-8:00 pm, Thursday 12 noon-8:00 pm, and Friday and Saturday, 10:00 am-6:00 pm. The Tool Lending Library is also located at 1901 Russell Street, with parking and entrance on Martin Luther King, Jr, Way. It is open: Tuesday and Wednesday, 10:00 am-8:00 pm, Thursday 12 noon-8:00 pm, Friday, 1:00 am-6:00 pm and Saturday, 10:00 am-6:00 pm. South Branch and the Tool Lending Library are wheelchair accessible. For more information, visit the library’s website: www.berkeleypubliclibrary.org.

The LEED program was created and is maintained by the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) which is an organization committed to a prosperous, healthy and sustainable future through cost-efficient and energy-saving green buildings awards designs.

Image Descriptions
Exterior of South Branch Library of  drought-resistant plantings use less water while bioswales absorb and prevent it from reaching the Bay. Photograph by David Wakely ©2013
Interior of South Branch Library. The tall browsing room is filled with daylight and cooled by operable clerestory windows and ceiling fans. The energy efficient LED fixtures are sensitive to the ambient light.  Window shades also help control temperature and light. Photograph by David Wakely ©2013



The Paintings of Pete Najarian at Berkeley Public Library

July 08, 2014
Contact: Michele McKenzie
Art & Music Librarian
Berkeley Public Library
The Paintings of Pete Najarian at Berkeley Public Library
Exhibit and Reception
Berkeley, July 7, 2014 – Berkeley artist and author Pete Najarian exhibits a retrospective of his paintings at the Central Library from July 7th – August 3rd, 2014.  All are invited to meet Najarian and discuss his work during an Artist Reception on Sunday, July 13th at 2:00 p.m. in the 1st floor Catalog Lobby of the Central Library. 
Najarian’s paintings have been exhibited both locally and internationally.  He taught creative writing at the Scripps College for Women in Claremont and the University of California at Berkeley.  Najarian also served as a Fulbright Lecturer in Armenia.  The exhibition will be on display from July 7th – August 3rd in the Catalog Lobby on the first floor of the Central Library, 2090 Kittredge at Shattuck, downtown Berkeley. For questions regarding this program, call 510-981-6241 or visit the library’s website: www.berkeleypubliclibrary.org
Second Street, Berkeley, oil, 2007 by Pete Najarian
Second Street, Berkeley, oil, 2007 by Pete Najarian
Najarian’s exhibition includes figurative paintings connected to his writing and plein air landscapes influenced by local master painters.  Najarian’s two books, The Artist and His Mother and Daughters of Memory, explore the connection of portraiture and the legacy of survivors of the Armenian Genocide. His books, including The Great American Loneliness are part of the Berkeley Public Library’s fiction collection.  A documentary about his mother, I Will Not Be Sad in This World, by local filmmaker Karina Epperlein is part of the library’s nonfiction film collection.
The Central Library is open Monday, noon-8 p.m., Tuesday, 10 a.m. - 8 p.m., Wednesday through Saturday, 10 a.m. - 6 p.m., and Sunday afternoons from 1 p.m. - 5 p.m.
This free program is sponsored by the Friends of the Berkeley Public Library (www.berkeleylibraryfriends.org).
Wheelchair accessible. For questions, to request a sign language interpreter or other accommodations for this event, please call (510) 981-6195 (voice) or (510) 548-1240 (TTY); at least five working days will help ensure availability. Please refrain from wearing scented products to public programs.