PACNY is pleased to present a Tender Loving Care Award to the Cortland Free Library in Cortland, New York for maintaining exceptionally high standards of care for a historic property.
The Cortland Free Library, listed on the National Register of Historic Places, is located at 32 Church Street and is a significant landmark in downtown Cortland. The library was built in 1928 and is a colossal, one-story building in the Georgian-Revival style constructed of tan tapestry bricks laid in Flemish bond above a stone basement. The main entrance to the library is marked by a projecting portico with four columns paired at each end. Originally, the portico was approached by a wide staircase that was replaced in 1976 with a smaller side staircase and a long handicapped ramp occupying nearly the entire northern half of the front of the building.
In 2011-2012 the library undertook a capital campaign to fund the design and construction of improvements to the entrance of the library. Significant funding was provided by the Cortland Community Foundation as well as the generous support of numerous private benefactors.
Work conducted at the front entrance included removing the deteriorating front ramp, restoring the original front staircase, and adding a new handicapped entrance around the corner of the building. The restored front entrance was re-opened in February of 2013. This project is as an excellent example of restoring the original grandeur of a landmark civic building while maintaining critical accessibility for all users.
PACNY applauds the Cortland Free Library for their stewardship of this impressive landmark building.