Library branch to temporarily close in Oshawa

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Published April 8, 2024 at 4:42 pm

One of Oshawa’s library branches is closed for the next while to update the facility’s lighting.

The John Aker Northview Branch of the Oshawa Library has closed down for a Lighting Rejuvenation Project for the next several weeks.  The branch sits at 250 Beatrice St E. as one of four locations across the city.

Oshawa launched its libraries in 1864 through the Oshawa Mechanics Institute. However, the first public library was built in 1902 with funding from Andrew Carnegie, a major philanthropist.

Carnegie has been ranked as the second-wealthiest American of all time when adjusted for inflation. In his day, he was the richest man alive after the sale of the Carnegie Steel Company.

He led numerous projects toward the public good, believing it is the wealthy’s responsibility to use their wealth to improve society. His philanthropy prioritized local libraries in the United States and across the British Commonwealth.

As Oshawa grew it needed a larger facility to accommodate the new influx of people by 1949. As such a new building was constructed with funds from Colonel R. S. McLaughlin.

In time the library grew to include multiple satellite offices across the city, including the Northview Branch in 1987. The development of this branch was heavily pushed by longtime city and regional councillor John Aker.

Aker had joined council in 1973 and long pursued a library expansion, serving until 1997. He served as Library Board Chair from 1989 to 1994. The Northview Branch he ushered in was formally named after him last year.

However, the branch is now in need of some upgrades and closed on April 8 to accommodate the the intallation of new lighting. It will remain shuttered until May 21 when it will re-open under its regular hours. 

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