Cities need to love libraries

“Whether it be in the U.S., NFLD or here in Toronto Libraries have key role to play in the 21st century:

  • Libraries contribute to a healthy democracy by helping people hone their marketable skills and digital competencies.
  • For millions, libraries are the only source of computers access for living and working in a digital world.
  • Literacy and intelligence are linked. Literate populace ask more of themselves and their governments.
  • “The very existence of libraries affords the best evidence that we may yet have hope for the future of man”. T.S. Eliot.

Importantly libraries are evolving. Well run they should not fall prey to the inevitable future new disrupters. Libraries have gone from a place for reading books and looking up facts to a place where one can learn skills and engage in new experiences. From a quiet thinking place to a vibrant community hub. Go into a modern library today, like the ones at the Scarborough Civic Centre or the new one on Albion road and you will hardly recognize today’s library. Yes, they still contain lots of books, but they also include numerous computer stations, tablets, 3D printers, media rooms, video game collections, etc. As a Harvard University study said, “every library should figure out what they want to be and just do that”. And that’s what the good library systems are doing. Today a new or revitalized library can dramatically help civic renewal.”