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Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh - Allegheny Regional Update.

Press Contact: Suzanne M. Thinnes
Communications Manager
Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh
412-688-8609 (fax)
412-491-6889 (cell)

For Immediate Release

(PITTSBURGH, PA - May 12, 2006) In the aftermath of the lightning strike that damaged its Allegheny Regional location, Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh continues to seek ways to restore library services to the North Side community. “Our primary concerns are to restore service to the community, secure our collections, and assure safety in doing so,” says Barbara Mistick, Library Director.

Preliminary studies commissioned by the library have found that the cooling, heating, and air quality systems are not functioning in the reading rooms, stack areas and other public areas of the library space. This creates concerns about human comfort as well as the safety of customers, employees and the library collections.

Library officials closed the location at 5 Allegheny Square indefinitely and are working with the City of Pittsburgh to find compatible space to accommodate the location’s visitors and activities.


  • Library officials are evaluating available commercial space that would have the square footage to accommodate its services and activities, the floor stability to withhold the heavy weight of library materials, easy accessibility, and be ADA compliant. While several properties have been offered and considered, no locations have been found that meet all of these needs. The Library is evaluating the options;

  • The Library is working together with the City of Pittsburgh, who retains ownership of the building, and applicable insurance carriers to develop reconstruction planning and costs

  • Children’s librarians are providing outreach services to schools and children’s groups who depend on the library. The Library’s summer reading program will continue on schedule, with customers able to register for the program online beginning in June at or at other library locations. Summer reading activities will go on as planned via neighborhood camp groups and other library locations.

  • Customers are encouraged to make use of any of the library’s 17 currently-open locations including:
    • CLP – Downtown & Business, 612 Smithfield Street
    • CLP – West End, 47 Wabash Avenue
    • CLP – Main, 4400 Forbes Avenue

    Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh card holders may also borrow and return materials from any Allegheny County Library.

  • Additionally, the Library has accelerated plans to re-open its Woods Run facility, originally slated for early August. That re-opening will help to provide an additional alternate location for customers

As one of the most visited Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh locations, Allegheny Regional welcomed over 96,000 visitors last year. The location houses a variety of materials that include special collections of local history dating back to the 1800’s such as city directories, newspapers of the era, Northside Bulletin, City of Allegheny Records, and British Patent Information. Among other services, the library also housed an active children’s area that served as the main library for three schools and several other children’s groups.

About Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh: "Free to the People" since 1895
Through its Main Library and network of neighborhood locations, Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh serves the dynamic and diverse information needs of people living in Western Pennsylvania. The Library is a vital community anchor that provides universal access to literature, culture, art, music, history, business and technology.