NY Public Library President Defends Renovation Plans

Four years of planning, and a $300 million price tag. But the New York Public Library’s large-scale renovation still isn’t impressing a prominent architecture critic. In his review of the project Wednesday, Michael Kimmelman of the New York Times says loud and clear, “I’m not buying it.”

But the library is defending its plans, which are still in progress. The library says its goals include increasing public space with a new circulating library, and merging two other branches into the 42nd Street Space.

“Michael’s a great critic, I just disagree,” said Anthony Marx, president of the New York Public Library. “Norman Foster is one of the world’s great architects. We’re still working on the details of the design but we but we put preliminary visuals out because we’re a publicly-supported institution.”

Marx responds to critics’ concerns about the iconic building, in an interview with WNYC’s Amy Eddings. Click the audio above to listen.