Fort Worth residents have until June 30 to visit the Central Library in downtown Fort Worth. Then, the building will close its doors for good, according to an informal report to the City Council.
The library will stop offering public programming, passport services and school field trips on May 6. It had already reduced its open hours in January ahead of the closing.
The Central Library building was sold to a national investment firm in December for $18 million, after city management decided that the location no longer fit into the library system’s future plans. Multiple floors had been closed since the pandemic, and the size was more than what the library needed.
If you go:
The City Council will host a work session May 2 at 1 p.m. at City Hall and a public comment meeting at 6 p.m. The library’s closure schedule will be discussed by city staff at the 1 p.m. meeting.
The firm that bought the property, Dart Interests, plans to demolish the Central Library building and redevelop the site. Under the terms of the sale contract, the city can remain in the building for a year while staff work on relocating all library materials.
Outgoing library director Manya Shorr previously told the Fort Worth Report that after the sale of the Central Library building, city staff would look for a smaller building downtown to ensure there was still a library present in the area. Property management staff continue to look for that space, according to the informal report, and the size of the space will determine what programs and services will be offered.
What about the stuff?
The items in the Central Library will be dispersed among other library locations or donated, according to the report.
The back-office library staff, book storage and distribution functions will relocate to a service center at 8604 Camp Bowie West Blvd. Discarded books and other library materials will go to a local charity, and city owned artwork will be placed in various city buildings, including the future City Hall.
The Bumpersaurus art piece, a popular art sculpture and attraction for children visiting the Central Library, will be moved to the new Vivian J. Lincoln Library. That library is set to open Saturday, July 8.
Residents hoping to take back memorial bricks laid outside of the central library can use this link to be placed on a contact list.
Emily Wolf is a government accountability reporter for the Fort Worth Report. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org or via Twitter. At the Fort Worth Report, news decisions are made independently of our board members and financial supporters. Read more about our editorial independence policy here.