Max Touhey Photography

The historic Rose Room is once again open to the public.

Jessica Plautz
October 08, 2016

The New York Public Library reopened the historic Rose Reading Room this week, following a two-year renovation.

An ornamental plaster rosette fell from the 52-foot-high ceiling in the room in May of 2014, leading to a full inspection of the room and repairs.

The Rose Room—and the entire landmark library—originally opened on May 23, 1911.

Courtesy of New York Public Library

Courtesy of New York Public Library

The renovation included recreating and replacing the rosette, one of 900 plaster pieces on the ceiling that are now all reinforced with steel cables, according to the library. The Bill Blass Public Catalog Room was also closed for the renovation.

“This public library, the greatest of public libraries in the world, is the foundation stone of a learned, informed, civil society,” said New York Public Library President Tony Marx. “It is the institution open to all...It is the basis of the democracy that we must continue to replenish. It is the institution committed to inclusion and opportunity.”

The $12-million renovation included a new conveyor system to move materials from the library's underground storage to the reading room.

Max Touhey Photography

Max Touhey Photography

“This great space, the greatest public room in this city, is now reopened to all,” said Marx.

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