Miami-Dade Public Library System - Main Library

101 West Flagler Street
Miami, FL 33130

305-375-2665
Vision:

The Miami-Dade Public Library System will be the compelling community destination by providing a five-star customer service experience.

Our 5-Star Commitment:

- Attitude: To be here for you.
- Resources: To provide opportunities for lifelong learning and exploration.
- Expertise: To be your best search engine.
- Empowerment: To open doors for you.
- Environment: To provide an inviting, comfortable and clean Library.

Mission:

The library mission is to maintain and improve public library services reflecting the informational, educational and recreational needs of our diverse community.

History:

Throughout the past century, Miamians have watched their public libraries grow from a tiny one-room library in Coconut Grove to more than 45 libraries spanning the County's southernmost point in Homestead to its northern reaches in Sunny Isles Beach. The Library System has not only grown, but dramatically evolved in the way services are provided - all in an effort to meet the informational, educational and recreational needs of the people of Miami-Dade County in the 21st century.

A Look Back:

Public libraries in Miami have a long, rich history - a history that traces back to the late 19th century. The earliest libraries in Miami were founded through the efforts of local women's club and in 1942, these libraries were brought together to form the City of Miami Public Library System. In 1971, city and county libraries joined forces to form the Miami-Dade Public Library System. Almost immediately, the new Library System experienced an unprecedented boost in its growth plans. This expansion was a result of the 1972 Decade of Progress Bond Program - a $553 million initiative which made possible many important local projects including the construction of 13 new libraries. Through the Decade of Progress Bond Program, regional libraries were constructed in South Dade, West Dade and North Dade, as well as branches in Northeast, Model City, Kendall, Miami Lakes, South Miami, Homestead, Coral Reef and Key Biscayne. Finally in 1985, at the newly constructed Cultural Plaza in downtown Miami, a new Main Library opened.

After this period of growth, two additional libraries opened in 1990 in the areas of North Central and West Kendall. In 1992, the world's first library on an elevated transit system opened at Metrorail's Civic Center station. However, for the next eight years, no further expansion of the system was funded and no new libraries opened. In the fall of 2001, the Mayor and Board of County Commissioners agreed to increase the Library System's budget which provided funding for capital improvement initiatives - making way for the opening of 18 new libraries by the year 2011.

Today:

When the Board of County Commissioners approved the Library System's Capital Plan in 2001, it was the first time in nearly a decade that the department had resources to open new libraries. The plan called for the immediate opening of a new wave of smaller libraries and the subsequent construction of 10 new libraries. These new types of libraries stemmed from what began as a homework center in the City of Doral and served as the model for storefront libraries located in shopping centers communities throughout the County. In rapid succession, the Library System successfully opened libraries in shopping centers in the areas of Country Walk, Hialeah Gardens, Tamiami, Naranja, Lakes of the Meadow, Concord, California Club and Palm Springs North.

Since 2001, nine libraries have broken ground, two have been opened and at the end of 2008 four more have opened. In addition to opening new branches, the plan also called for the relocation or renovation of existing facilities. Two branches have been relocated to larger facilities and major renovations have taken place at six branches. In the more than 100 years of serving this community, the Library System has experienced tremendous change and growth and all the while has been committed to becoming "the compelling community destination by providing a five-star customer experience."
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