“Building a Better Belfast, Brick by Book” will enable the Belfast Public Library to serve as a historic centerpiece institution for the town of Belfast and Allegany County. The expansion will house all library materials under one roof accessible to all patrons, adding space for large groups to gather and small groups to socialize.

The Belfast Public Library will serve as a prominent hallmark of Belfast history, pride, and growth. In addition to traditional resources, the project will allow the library to better serve our rural community. We will add technology for telehealth and additional medical and educational resources.

Through modernizing one of the town’s most treasured historical buildings, the Library will be a: fully public library, accessible to all regardless of disability,economic status, or age; vibrant anchor of community life, hosting large and various groups, events, and points of interest; symbol of the resilience and resolve of the citizens of Belfast, transforming an iconic cornerstone of the town of Belfast into a new period of public service through the collective commitment of its citizens.

  • Project Goals
  • Accessibility
  • Children’s Library
  • Community Meeting Room
  • Telehealth space for therapy and medical appointments
  • Storage and staff work space
  • Increased access to technology
  • Comfortable seating areas
  • Outdoor usable green space
  • Parking expansion
  • Space to grow with our ideas
  • Additional programming:
    • Art residencies and studios
    • Music & art lessons and shows
    • Exercise, health, nutrition classes
    • Various life skills courses
    • Local history
    • Theater events

Dear Friends of the Belfast Public Library,

As Belfast celebrates its Bicentennial, I consider the wonderful memories I have of this town over the years as I raised my family, taught generations of children, and served on a variety of organizations including the library board and the school board for 14 years. This year is a great time to celebrate what our small town has to offer and to reflect on how we can grow stronger in the future.

Our library is a special place.  It  is in the top ten in Allegany and Cattaraugus counties for usage and this has increased 34% in the past two years.  It was recently awarded the Southern Tier Library Service’s “Innovation in Outreach Programming Award” for the “Belfast Book Box” Program, and offers many other programs like the Summer Concert Series and the Taste of Belfast, one of the most well attended community events in our town, year after year. 

Built in 1915 with funds donated by Belfast native Frank Bartlett and an Andrew Carnegie grant, our library is architecturally iconic and historical, but it just isn’t large enough to serve as the community center we’d like it to be. In addition, the library is not accessible to mobility impaired patrons. The children’s annex was a wonderful solution for many years, but that building requires costly repairs and is challenging for staffing and programming. 

The current library board and recently formed Friends of the Library organization are working to improve the building while maintaining the historical landmark so that it can evolve into an even stronger center of our community. The “Building a Better Belfast, Brick by Book” Capital Project aims to renovate and enlarge the library to include space for a community center, children’s library, telehealth and multimedia centers, tutoring and continuing education classes, and add much-needed accessibility so that, finally, all patrons can access the library’s services.  

The library board is actively applying for large grants to fund the majority if not all of the project,  and has already secured at least 30% of the funding through New York State Library Construction Aid.  Some local fundraising will be essential in helping reach this goal. Operating one building instead of two will provide long-term cost savings as well. Would you consider supporting this worthy project?  

Tax exempt donations can be made online via Zeffy, a secure online donation platform for nonprofits, (QR code available on additional informational page) at https://tinyurl.com/ BrickByBook, or by check to Belfast Public Library, P.O. Box 455, Belfast, NY 14711. These gifts can be one-time or monthly, in memory or honor of a loved one, and donors will be acknowledged for all levels of giving.  

I hope you will join me in offering one of our community’s vital institutions your support.  Thank you in advance for your contribution!

Best regards,

Cecy Curcio