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Patchogue's Carnegie library relocation to be considered

Main Street in Patchogue. (July 1, 2011)

Main Street in Patchogue. (July 1, 2011) Credit: Carl Corry

The first step toward saving the Carnegie library in Patchogue is scheduled for Tuesday, when Suffolk Legis. Rob Calarco (D-Patchogue) introduces a resolution to move the historic building to a new location.

The century-old building, funded by philanthropist Andrew Carnegie as part of a national literacy initiative, currently sits where a $100 million Patchogue New Village mixed-use development is slated to rise.

The 2,300-square-foot neoclassical-style building would be moved to the parking lot of the Sixth District Court on West Main Street if the county signs off on the plan.

“The Carnegie library has a lot of historical significance in Patchogue,” Calarco said.

One of two Carnegie libraries still standing on Long Island, it served as Patchogue’s library until 1981. The building was then used by Briarcliffe College until about a decade ago, and since then has been neglected and covered in graffiti.

New Village developer Tritec has agreed to pay to relocate the building and build a new foundation.

The county would lease the land to Patchogue for a nominal sum, and it would be up to the village to maintain the site.

Patchogue Mayor Paul Pontieri hailed the solution.

“What it really shows is cooperation between multiple levels of government to solve an issue that had been a problem,” he said.

Once the building is moved and restored, Pontieri hopes an arts or film organization will make use of the space.

“It’s a great spot. It’s a great property, and it’s not going to cost the village any money,” Pontieri said. “Now we have to find a use for it.”

The resolution’s earliest possible adoption will be at the March 13 legislative meeting.

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