Virginia Beach Public Libraries Are Celebrating 60 Years and Counting

On May 12, 1959, the first-ever municipally-funded branch of Virginia Beach Public Library (VBPL) opened its doors on 21st Street at the Oceanfront. 
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Entrance of first Virginia Beach librarySixty years later, VBPL has 10 branches across the city and is beloved for the resources, programs and opportunities available to all Virginia Beach residents, free with a library card. 

Of course, the library is still a great place to borrow books and now you can do​wnload them, too. Today’s library is a technology hub where you can access 3-D printers, computers and Internet, and where children learn computer coding while playing with toy robots. It’s a center for early literacy classes and lifelong learning programs. And it’s a resource to help small business owners and job-seekers pursue next-level opportunities. If you haven’t been to the library lately, visit VBgov.com/libraries​ and see all that’s available. 

Library Renovations
In order to continue providing residents with the best possible services and accommodate how libraries are used today, VBPL updating eight of its 10 buildings – all except the Wahab Public Law Library and the TCC/City Joint-Use Library which opened in 2013. Renovations began last winter at Bayside, Kempsville and Princess Anne and this spring at Central Library. Because of the nature of the renovations at Kempsville and Princess Anne, these libraries have been closed during the construction and are expected to reopen this summer. Bayside and Central libraries remain open during renovations. Here are some renovation highlights for each building. 

Bayside & Special Services Library
The children’s area has been reconfigured with a new, enclosed storytime room that is nearly double the size of the original storytime room. A new reception area in Special Services provides a more comfortable area to review reading preferences with customers.

Central Library 
The new children’s area, which will be located on the first floor rather than the second floor, is getting walls and plumbing for new children’s bathrooms. Carpet and cabinets are in the process of being replaced in the meeting space and kitchen.  

Kempsville Area Library
The children’s area has been enclosed to help control sound in the building. Public restrooms have been updated. There’s a new, more spacious service desk with extra self-check out stations for customer convenience, and an increase from two to three study rooms.

Princess Anne Area Library
Study rooms have been rebuilt at the front of the building to improve sound. New children’s and teen areas have been expanded and the children’s room is enclosed. New carpet will be going down soon.

​​For more on library renovations and where to receive services while Kempsville and Princess Anne are closed, visit VBgov.com/libraries

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