lovett library and park

Mt. Airy’s beloved Lovett Memorial Library opened in 1887, an independent facility founded as a memorial to Thomas Lovett, who purchased the land at Germantown Avenue and Sedgwick Street 20 years prior.

The library is situated on a property that also includes a roughly one-acre park, defined on the Lovett deed to remain a park in perpetuity, with the lone exception of the library’s expansion—which has now happened twice.

After entering the Free Library of Philadelphia’s network in 1924, an addition was built in 1961. In 2016, the library closed for an 18-month renovation and expansion as part of two initiatives: Building Inspiration: 21st Century Libraries Initiative, and Reimagining the Civic Commons. The William Penn Foundation has generously supported both initiatives, with additional funding from the Knight Foundation for Civic Commons.

While the Free Library of Philadelphia built an expansion for a children’s library onto the library building, Mt. Airy CDC partnered with Fairmount Park Conservancy to invigorate and activate the park grounds, transforming it into the community center it’s destined to be at its location in the exact heart of Mt. Airy. The library reopened in December 2017, and with a first week that included the Go Mt. Airy Garden Party and five nights of Parks on Tap, Lovett Park reopened in May 2018.

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