Announcing Building Inspiration: 21st Century Libraries

By Samantha M. RSS Tue, September 9, 2014

It’s an exciting time of transformation at the Free Library of Philadelphia!

The Free Library of Philadelphia is proud to announce Building Inspiration: 21st Century Libraries, a groundbreaking initiative to renovate and expand the Parkway Central Library, restore and modernize neighborhood libraries across the city, and strengthen community partnerships to best meet the diverse needs of all Philadelphians. Building Inspiration is made possible by several generous gifts in a unique partnership between the public and private sectors, underscored by a historic $25 million gift from the William Penn Foundation—the largest private gift ever received by the Library. Guided by the Free Library’s strategic plan, Building Inspiration reflects the Library’s commitment to being a highly flexible, outward-facing, community-focused organization.

Funding for Building Inspiration is being raised and managed by the Free Library of Philadelphia Foundation, a private, non-profit, 501c3 entity that supports the programs and activities of the Free Library of Philadelphia. In addition to the William Penn Foundation, major funding partners of the $60 million Building Inspiration: 21st Century Libraries initiative include the City of Philadelphia and Philadelphia City Council, the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, Ruth and A. Morris Williams, Jr., and many additional private gifts from foundations and individuals.

We’re thrilled to be able to embark on this multi-phase, multi-faceted initiative, which includes renovations and restorations at the Parkway Central Library as well as at five prototype neighborhood libraries across the city. To learn more about Building Inspiration, check out

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