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LIC Library on Hold as Design Runs Millions Over Budget

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Plans for the long awaited Queens Library at Hunters Point are set to be redrawn, now that construction bids have run millions over budget, according to the Times-Ledger.

Designs put forward by celebrated architect Steven Holl made waves in 2011. The 21,500-square-foot, 80-foot tall waterfront building would showcase huge, sweeping windows, which no doubt would have created some pretty spectacular East River views from Manhattan when lit up at night. It would have also featured a rooftop terrace, gardens, and a gallery.

However, according to the Times-Ledger, bids for the proposed design range from $33 to $42 million, while the overall budget allocated by the city comes in at $28.6 million. Citing "the overall complexity of the design and several unique, difficult to source, or expensive to procure, interior and design features," president and CEO of Queens Library Thomas Gallante said that the entire project was now up in the air.

In a letter to Friends of Queens Library at Hunters Point, Gallante said that there would be far-reaching changes to Holl's design to lower costs. The proposed geothermal heating system will be replaced by a more traditional system, while the much-lauded aluminum facade will be significantly scaled down to a combination of cement and glass. These changes will shave an estimated $4.7 million off the total budget. Gallante also said that the project would be open to bids from "a new and more extensive list of contractors."
· "Hunters Point library on hold as new plans drawn up" [Times-Ledger]
· "The Hunters Point Library Design Will Change Dramatically" ['Stoner Queens]
· All Hunters Point Library coverage [Curbed]