Medford, MA Native Michael Bloomberg Contributes $3 Million for Construction of New Library to Serve as Critical Community Hub
First City-Wide Capital Campaign Launched to Raise Remaining $500,000 Needed
NEW YORK, NY and MEDFORD, MA – Bloomberg Philanthropies and the Medford Public Library Foundation today announced that the new public library being constructed in the City of Medford will be named the Charlotte and William Bloomberg Medford Public Library in honor of Michael Bloomberg and Marjorie Bloomberg Tiven’s parents, who lived in Medford for 65 years. Michael Bloomberg has made a $3 million gift toward the construction of the new public library in his hometown, recognizing the essential role it plays in the community. The Charlotte and William Bloomberg Medford Public Library is slated to open in the fall of 2021.
“The Medford Public Library played such a big role in our community, and in my family, when my sister and I were growing up,” said Michael R. Bloomberg, founder of Bloomberg Philanthropies and Bloomberg LP, 108th mayor of New York City. “Our father was passionate about books and our mother joined one of the library’s first reading groups – and she continued returning to the library for clubs and programs throughout her life. It means a lot to Marjorie and me to have our parents’ names attached to an institution that was such an important part of our childhood, and that provides such important resources to people of all ages in our hometown.”
“My parents instilled in my brother and me a love of learning and reading, and the Medford Library gave us the chance to explore new worlds and broaden our horizons,” said Marjorie B. Tiven, founder and president of Global Cities, Inc. “It was central to the city’s social and cultural life and a treasured resource for so many families. The new library will open doors for even more people through books and learning – expanding opportunity, enriching the community, and improving lives. I know our parents would be proud to be playing a role in the next chapter of the library’s history.”
“We are honored and grateful to Mr. Bloomberg and Bloomberg Philanthropies for their support of this important project, which will provide incredible new opportunities and resources for the Medford community,” said Medford Mayor Breanna Lungo-Koehn. “The new library building will serve ALL of Medford’s residents, providing cutting edge technology and access to resources for generations to come.”
The new library on High Street, designed by Boston architects Schwartz Silver and being constructed by G&R Construction of Quincy, MA, will replace the former library building which opened in 1960. It will nearly double the usable square footage and solve past issues with accessibility, noise, design, and technology. The Charlotte and William Bloomberg Medford Public Library will have cutting edge technology, be fully ADA compliant, energy efficient, and LEED certified.
The former library hosted over 200,000 visitors each year, and the new design was conceived to better meet their needs – while allowing ample space and opportunities for new visitors. The new building will feature multiple meeting rooms, private study spaces, a large performance room, a makerspace and tech lab, a local history room, café, and gallery. The Charlotte and William Bloomberg Medford Public Library will provide a place for the community to learn, gather, and experiment with new tools and technologies. Children’s and teen spaces will occupy the second level, with the adult reading room and research area on the first level. Medford’s young readers will finally have their own age-appropriate spaces to enjoy. Adult users will be able to study in a quiet space, work at the laptop bar, or curl up with a book in a comfortable corner. A terrace will provide an outside reading and relaxation area in the shade of the historic beech tree on Hillside Ave.
“The Medford Public Library plays an important role in the life of the community. The new library will continue and improve upon that tradition in a larger, updated, and far better-equipped space,” said Barbara Kerr, the Director of the Library. “We are very pleased that the new library will honor Mr. Bloomberg and Ms. Tiven’s parents. Charlotte Bloomberg was a regular visitor and contributor to the library. The library was a part of her life, and I am happy that she will be honored in this way.”
In 2017, the City of Medford received a grant of $12.2 million from the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners for construction of a new library. This grant will cover nearly half of the estimated $27.5 million project budget and City funds will cover an additional portion of the costs. In 2018, the Medford Public Library Foundation (MPLF), a 501(c)(3) organization, was established to raise, manage, and monitor the private funds needed for the construction, outfitting, maintenance, and operation of the Medford Public Library. MPLF aims to raise a minimum of $5 million from the private sector and foundations. Mr. Bloomberg’s $3 million contribution is being added to $1.5 million in gifts and pledges already made by institutions including Agero, Brookline Bank, Cache Medford, Century Bank, The Cummings Foundation, East Cambridge Savings Bank, John Pereira, the John and Thelma Connors Foundation, the Laura Paul Fund, Medford Rotary, Medford Kiwanis, Members Plus Credit Union, Sentry Auto Group, and Tufts University.
MPLF is leading the first city-wide capital campaign to raise the remaining $500,000 and to involve citizens who love the library in its new home. There will be opportunities to contribute by naming an engraved paver on the terrace, a leaf on the Medford Family Tree, or a solar panel. In addition, promotions will be run to help local businesses who are assisting the new library. Those interested in making a gift can learn more at www.medfordpubliclibraryfoundation.org/donate.
“Mr. Bloomberg’s generous lead contribution provides the capstone to our quiet phase fundraising,” said Barry Sloane, Chairman and CEO of Century Bank, and President of the Medford Public Library Foundation. “Private funds are necessary to cover many elements of the new library that are ineligible for public funding, including technology, furniture, landscaping, and fixtures. Many of Medford’s corporations and institutions have also stepped forward over the last year to make major commitments and we thank them for their early major support.”
“We are 90 percent of the way towards reaching our $5 million goal in pledges and commitments,” said Ellen Tonello, Chair of Medford Public Library Trustees. “We are excited to work with the Medford community to complete our effort to make the new Charlotte and William Bloomberg Medford Public Library a reality.”
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About Bloomberg Philanthropies
Bloomberg Philanthropies invests in more than 570 cities and over 160 countries around the world to ensure better, longer lives for the greatest number of people. The organization focuses on five key areas for creating lasting change: the Arts, Education, Environment, Government Innovation, and Public Health. Bloomberg Philanthropies encompasses all of Michael R. Bloomberg’s giving, including his foundation and personal philanthropy as well as Bloomberg Associates, a pro bono consultancy that works in cities around the world. In 2019, Bloomberg Philanthropies distributed $3.3 billion. For more information, please visit bloomberg.org or follow us on Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, Twitter, and TikTok.
About the Medford Public Library Foundation
Established in 2018, the Medford Public Library Foundation is a 501(c)(3) organization founded to solicit, manage and monitor private funds raised for the construction, outfitting, maintenance and operation of the Medford Public Library. The organization works in collaboration with the Office of the Mayor of the City of Medford, Medford Library Trustees, and the Friends of the Medford Public Library. For more information, please visit medfordpubliclibraryfoundation.org and follow us on Twitter.