Termites are literally eating away at Bay Ridge’s literacy.
The original reopening of the Fort Hamilton branch of the Brooklyn Public Library, has been pushed back for a few more months after renovators discovered that termites had chewed through more wood beams than they originally thought.
Now Bay Ridge bookworms will have to wait until at least this fall for the grand reopening of the 104-year-old building, a spokeswoman for Councilman Vince Gentile (D-Bay Ridge) told The Brooklyn Paper on Sunday. Gentile has supported the rehabilitation — which includes a 50 percent increase in the library’s size — and helped secure $3.36 million from the city for the much-needed space.
The lumber-lusting pests have been eradicated, but so has access to an extensive catalogue of books that’s been out of commission since spring of 2008.
In lieu of a true library, a book service on the move in a 29-foot-long truck — called a Bookmobile — makes sporadic appearances at community events on Saturdays. There are groans whenever the subject of the tome-filled tour bus comes up at local community board meetings.
“We know the Bookmobile is no substitute for the branch and the staff,” said Library spokesman Steven Schechter. “We are trying to move forward as quickly as possible.”
It’s not just the bugs that have caused havoc. Schechter also cited “this summer’s wet weather” for causing roof deterioration — and the latest delay.