Wood Library is so much more than a building filled with books. It is a highly-valued cultural community resource. In February 2014 we celebrated the opening of the library’s new building addition. This was made possible by generous donations from hundreds of people, area businesses, and NYS grants.
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When Wood Library opened in 1859 it was located in a back room of what is now Canandaigua’s City Hall. That one-room library would eventually become a hub for the community’s educational and cultural life.
In 1914 the library relocated to share space with the Ontario County Historical Society. Then, in 1973, the library moved from the cramped quarters it shared with the Historical Society to its current location at 134 North Main Street, Canandaigua. That year, Wood Library was visited 20,000 times.
Wood Library is a much different place than it was 150 years ago, and even 10 years ago. Now a cornerstone of the community, Wood Library fosters lifelong learning, creative expression, literacy, and friendships. It is a place for families, a place to go to meet friends or attend a meeting. It offers the latest advances in library services, and is open to all. Today, the library is visited over 100,000 times and is a meeting place for dozens of community groups.
Back in 2005, the library trustees began planning for a $4 million capital renovation and building project. The New Chapter Capital Campaign was initiated and funds were sought for a major renovation of the historic facility and building addition. The project’s first phase was completed in May 2011. The renovation transformed the library and accomplished several goals of the campaign, namely: to create a larger teen library and additional space for quiet study and tutoring, add more computers and better internet access throughout the building, update the building’s heating and cooling systems, and pave the way for a future building addition.
In 2014 we opened over 5,000 square feet of new library space to accommodate a new elevator, meeting rooms, a larger children’s library, and space for popular materials. We also improved the gateway entrance to the library so people can be served better, added staff work space, and improved parking.
We are grateful to everyone who helped us realize our vision for Wood Library’s new chapter. Thank you!