Atlanta Central Library Answers Renovations with Laptops in the Park

July 18,2018

Source: Veronica Waters, WSB

The Atlanta Fulton Public Library System has a novel approach to bring technology to people while its Central branch is under renovation. 

"Library on the Lawn" is in its second week at Woodruff Park. It consists of 10 Chromebooks, set up on tables under a tent on the shady north side of the park, with the water wall cascading nearby. 

The occasional fire engine siren passing on Peachtree Street is also part of the backdrop, if Tuesday afternoon was any indication. But the hubbub of the city didn't seem to bother the people who were taking advantage of the laptops. 

The computers have a 30-minute use period – if there is a wait. However, if there is no wait, the user can surf as long as they want. 

"The library isn't just about books anymore," says Amanda Densmore, Community Engagement Librarian at Atlanta-Fulton Public Library System. "It's about technology, and bringing Internet to people who may not necessarily have it. We just want to make sure that everybody has equal access, and ways to get what they need done." 

Densmore says no library card is needed to sign up to use a laptop, but they are also providing library cards for anyone who wants to get one. She says the AFPLS has a lot of features that people may not know about, including free downloadable movies, TV shows, books, comics, and music streaming, as well as access to the New York Times and digital magazines. She says just four days in, it seems clear that Library on the Lawn is a hit. 

"I've seen regulars since I've been here," she says. "Definitely, people are coming back." 

Read the complete article at the link above.