004 St. James Town Library
The St. James Town Library is a medium sized library next to the Wellesley Community Centre. It offers both programming in collaboration with the Wellesley CC and its own programming like children’s services and book clubs (more on that later).
It serves the most densely populated community in Toronto, as the area that it is in offers many high rise lodgings. As such, although it is a smaller library, its collections reflect the enormous diversity of its population. It has an immense array of multilingual materials including what appears to be the only Nepali public library material available in the Toronto Public Library system. It also offers resources in French, Chinese, Russian, Urdu, Korean and Spanish.
This compliments the programming services offered by the library, including a full children’s collection and a story time. St. James Town also collaborates with the Wellesley Community Centre programs such as summer camps, after school programs and day cares. During the day time, you will see a number of users from all walks of life gathered around the various multilingual resources, using the offered technologies or participating in events.
Perhaps what is most unique about this library branch is its initiative to bridge digital and physical spaces. Their latest foray in this manner is Pod-Club for the online series Serial. Branch Head Michael Warner tells me that the Pod-Club is trying to connect library users using digital media. This combination is a new concept but one that I hope picks up steam and is soon offered at more TPL locations. The Library does also offer traditional Book Club programming, including a pride themed book club called “Proud Readers Book Club” (due to its proximity to Church Street).
Special thanks to Michael Warner for his introduction to the St. James Town Library.