Sunday, March 03, 2024

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Library Wins $246,545 MakerSpace Grant

The Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) in Washington, D.C. has awarded The Westport Library a $246,545 grant to enhance the year-old MakerSpace, declared a highly innovative project with broad potential impact for other libraries, library officials announced today.

WestportNow.com Image
Library Trustee Mike Guthman helped celebrate MakerSpace’s first birthday in July. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Phyllis Groner for WestportNow.com

The Westport Library was selected from a competitive field of applicants to receive funding foor MakerSpace 2.0: Retinkering Libraries. According to library officials, the project proposes to transform the current MakerSpace, introducing more hands-on maker experiences, workshops and makers-in-residence who will support an innovation lab.

Projects include robotics, LED creations and tinkering with home electronics repairs. Also included are interactive Innovation Stations (iStations) to introduce participants to the concepts and techniques of innovative thinking.

The IMLS used a peer review process to evaluate the grant applications. According to library officials, reviewers commented the MakerSpace was cutting edge, giving the library “the potential to make a big impact.”

The grant will be shared with partners in the application—the Information and Library Science Department of Southern Connecticut State University and the state Department of Library Services.

For further information, call 203-291-4800, or check westportlibrary.org.

2 thoughts on “Library Wins $246,545 MakerSpace Grant

  1. As much as I appreciate and recognize how innovative the MakerSpace is, I hope when this expansion takes place it is moved off the main floor of the library. I guess I am “old school” and still preceive the library as a quiet oasis. It is hard to have those quiet library moments amidst the sounds of electric saws and drills that currently emanate from the “NoiseMakerSpace”.

  2. Perhaps a place can be set aside within the new, expanded library to house MakerSpace separately from quiet reading areas.  Meeting new and changing needs, our library has initiated useful programs,  from internet job search assistance to drop-in discussion groups in many languages.  As the library’s imaginative leaders discover new ways to fulfill the library’s mission, they surely can find a solution to the noise problem.

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