Los Angeles has now completed a vast public library building program with the opening of its 72nd branch. City leaders celebrated the new high-tech Silver Lake library on Monday, concluding a two-decade investment of $335 million. More than 90 percent of library infrastructure was replaced, and the program came in far enough under budget to add projects such as the environmentally friendly final branch. The facility is “eco-friendly” and built to meet the U. S. Green Building Council’s Gold LEED standards as an environmentally sustainable design with minimal impact on the environment. The branch is the first to use an automated book check-in and sorting system with a computerized conveyor belt that will speed book returns. Library Board President Tyree Wieder notes that even in the digital age 18 million books were checked out last year.
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