Northeast Regional Library

2228 Cottman Avenue
Philadelphia, PA 19149-1297
(Cottman Ave. & Oakland St.)

Having trouble getting healthcare? The Free Library is here to help!

You might qualify for new options, and now is the time to sign up! Open Enrollment runs from November 1, 2016 – January 31, 2017

Trained experts are available to answer your question and help you enroll. Sign up online at or send an mail to to make an appointment. You can also call them at 215-330-5269.

Cognosante trained experts will be at this location on Wednesdays from 3:30 - 7:30 p.m., Thursdays from 12:30  to 5:00 p.m. and Saturdays from 11:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.  - by appointment only.

Open today 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.

Sunday 1:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Monday Closed
Tuesday 12:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.
Wednesday 12:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.
Thursday 10:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.
Friday 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Saturday 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.

Upcoming Closures

  • Thu., Feb. 9: Opening at 2:00 PM Due to staff development.
  • Mon., Feb. 20: Closed Presidents' Day
  • Thu., Mar. 9: Opening at 2:00 PM Due to staff development.
  • Thu., Apr. 13: Opening at 2:00 PM Due to staff development.
  • Fri., Apr. 14: Closed Good Friday
View all holiday closings

Photo of Northeast Regional Library


  • Baby changing station
  • Bicycle rack
  • Book drop box
  • Change machine
  • Children's only restroom
  • Computer lab
  • Computers for public use
  • Meeting space (reservation required)
  • Photocopier (black/white)
  • Printing (black/white)
  • Public restrooms
  • Screen magnify tools
  • Self-service checkout
  • Street parking
  • Street parking (free)
  • Water fountain
  • Wireless internet access (wi/fi)


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Upcoming Events

Settlement Music School's Jazz Recital

Sat, Jan 21, 1:00 P.M.

Settlement Music School will present a Student Jazz Recital from 1:00 – 3:00 p.m.  A representative from the school will be on…

Open Computer Lab

Tue, Jan 24, 12:00 P.M.

Work on a special project and get one-on-one assistance.  This class is offered on a first come, first served basis and space is limited.…

Computer Basics Workshop

Tue, Jan 24, 5:30 P.M.

A hands-on, introductory class designed for individuals with no previous computer skills. This class is offered on a first come, first served…

Open Computer Lab

Wed, Jan 25, 12:00 P.M.

Work on a special project and get one-on-one assistance.  This class is offered on a first come, first served basis and space is limited.…

The Play's the Thing | Play Screenings and Discussion

Wed, Jan 25, 2:00 P.M.

Join us for a series of screenings and discussions on these popular and classic plays.  Discussions will follow the films.  Today we…

Internet Searching

Wed, Jan 25, 5:30 P.M.

Learn to find the information you want on the internet. Class runs for two hours. This class is offered on a first come, first served basis. We…

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The Northeast Regional Library is second only to the Central Library in size, available resources and number of staff. Located near the intersection of Cottman and Bustleton Avenues, it serves the greater northeast area as a regional library, and the entire city for research.


The area served by Northeast Regional Library encompasses land that was originally Lower Dublin Township and parts of Oxford and Delaware Townships. Settlers from northern Europe first arrived there in the seventeenth century, and established farms. The area remained primarily agricultural until the early twentieth century. In 1854, these townships, along with the boroughs of Frankford and Bridesburg, were consolidated into Philadelphia County.

In 1955, the Free Library of Philadelphia developed the concept of the regional library, which would serve as a branch for its immediate area, and also as a bridge between the comprehensive collections of the Central Library and the more modest resources offered by neighborhood branches. A proposal to build the first regional library was approved for the 1957-1962 capital budgets. On July 11, 1962, ground was broken for the Northeast Regional Library, the first in a proposed series of regional libraries that would be built in each geographical sector of the city.

The city's northeast saw rapid development after World War II. Large tracts of vacant land were soon filled with thousands of row homes and twins. The homes were occupied by returning servicemen, many the sons of immigrants.

Retail development soon followed. In 1952, ground was broken for a $5,000,000 shopping complex that included a department store and supermarket at Cottman and Castor Avenues. The Roosevelt Mall opened in the early sixties, followed by another department store at Cottman Avenue and Roosevelt Boulevard in 1965. The site selected for Northeast Regional is located in the heart of this shopping complex.

Northeast Regional offers a collection of more than 150,000 books divided into four subject departments, including the children's department. A fifth department offers an extensive collection of periodicals and newspapers. Each department occupies an entire floor of the building; the lowest level is an auditorium meeting room. The circulation desk is located in the ground floor lobby of the building. When you visit, look for the 9x44' three-dimensional wooden mural that adorns the right wall of the lobby.

The children's department of the library opened on Monday, October 28, 1963; the adult departments opened in December, 1963. In 1998, the library was renovated as part of the "Changing Lives" campaign, which brought Internet service to every branch.

Featured Programs & Services

Public Transportation

Bus Routes: 58, 70
Subway/Surface: Market/Frankford el to Bridge Street then transfer to 58 bus.
Broad Street subway to Fern Rock station then transfer to 70 bus.
Commuter Trains: Take R8 local to Ryers Station, then transfer to 70 bus.