Due to budget cuts, the New York Public Library has reduced hours and undertaken other cost-saving measures since September 11, 2001. Today the New York Times reports that the library is on the mend, because of budget increases and donations from individual philanthropists, and will expand its hours in the coming months.
Not long ago, Patience and Fortitude, the ninety-three-year-old stone lions guarding the entrance to the main library (New York Times photo at right), were swathed in electric blankets in preparation for cleaning and massive face lifts.
According to the Times:
The repairs were ordered after an inspection of exterior sculptures showed the lions in need of attention. More extensive repairs will be made to the library later as part of a comprehensive $40 million-to-$50 million restoration of the exterior of the building, a city and national landmark. “This is arguably the greatest Beaux-Arts building in America,” Dr. LeClerc [the library’s president] said, “and at the centennial of our opening in 2011, we hope to return it to the city in pristine condition.”