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Tuesday, April 2, 2019

Queens Library Changes Its Name to Queens Public Library, As It Renews Its Promise to the Public with a New Visual Identity, New Website, and Enhanced Approach to Customer Service

QUEENS, N.Y. _ Queens Library President and CEO Dennis M. Walcott today launched the Library’s “Renewed Promise to the Public,” a long-term initiative to honor and serve the diversity of the Library’s customers and communities that includes changing its name to Queens Public Library, a new logo, tagline, pattern and colors, a new website, and sharpening its focus on customer experience.

The kickoff was held at Central Library with New York City Council Member Jimmy Van Bramer, Chair of the Libraries and Cultural Affairs Committee, staff, customers and members of the Friends of Queens Public Library. President Walcott also announced he plans to visit all of QPL’s 65 locations in 65 days to welcome the public alongside Library staff.

“We want to make clear who we are, what we aspire to be and what people can expect from us whenever they walk into one of our locations, have an interaction with us, call us, or visit us online,” said President Walcott. “We are upholding a promise that requires us to define how we think about our role in fulfilling the public’s needs, how the public perceives us and the experience we are committed to delivering. The word ‘renewal’ recognizes our 123-year history and that we are constantly evolving to meet the changing needs of our communities. And we added ‘public’ back to our name to reinforce who is at the center of our work and to whom the Library belongs.”

The previous logo, an orange and yellow book topped by a wing with the tagline “Enrich Your Life” and name, Queens Library, were adopted in 2005.

“As a former employee and the current Chair of the Committee on Cultural Affairs and Libraries, I have championed the Queens Public Library for over 21 years and I am proud to help turn the page on this new chapter,” said Council Member Jimmy Van Bramer. “The new website and brand redesign is not only visually stunning, it embodies the Queens Public Library’s renewed commitment to better serving all of our diverse communities across Queens. I will never stop working to ensure that each and every public library branch across our borough is well-funded and thriving.”

Queens Public Library President and CEO Dennis M. Walcott with New York City Council Member Jimmy Van Bramer.

Queens Public Library President and CEO Dennis M. Walcott with New York City Council Member
Jimmy Van Bramer.

"The newly renamed Queens Public Library is one of our borough's most beloved and treasured institutions, as each of its 65 locations across Queens uplift and empower residents of all ages,” said Queens Borough President Melinda Katz. “This rebranding initiative will further boost the Queens Public Library's standing in our borough, while affirming the collective promise of its branches as community centers of literacy, learning and culture that prioritize the growing families of Queens.”

QPL’s main color is now purple, a color associated with some of the qualities QPL seeks to cultivate, such as wisdom, creativity, dignity, and ambition, and a secondary palette of colors highlights the vibrancy and diversity of the public the Library serves.

The new tagline is “We speak your language.” It means QPL not only speaks Spanish, Chinese, Bengali, Russian, Greek and many other tongues, but also imagination, tech, history, LGBTQ, HTML, finance, non-fiction, science fiction, story time, chess, teens, opportunity, and many other interests and pursuits. It makes clear that the Library is here for everyone, understanding what their needs are and helping them pursue their goals.

The new logo is a Q comprised of tilted pieces that celebrate the many diverse perspectives of Queens Public Library, its resources, programs and services, and communities.  It uses two- and three-dimensional space to express QPL’s physical and cultural characteristics.

In two dimensions, the mark is the letter Q, referencing the Library’s name and the borough of Queens. In three dimensions, it houses an open book, an open doorway, and a welcome mat, extending QPL’s promise and welcoming everyone.

To help ensure all QPL speaks each person’s language, the Library is providing all staff with implicit bias workshops. It also is planning internal equity, diversion and inclusion dialogues as well as cross-cultural training.

“Our ‘Renewed Promise to the Public’ is not just about words,” President Walcott said. “It is about helping people get where they want to go in their lives by working hard to understand where they are coming from.”

All QPL locations now have tablets dedicated to Google Translate so staff can have conversations in multiple languages with customers. The Library also will offer another type of translation device at every site and will soon pilot a language line service offering telephone interpretation at several locations.

The new website is faster, easier to navigate and search, clearer—with more contrast to better meet ADA compliance, can be translated in over 80 languages and has a responsive design that will work on PCs and mobile devices with different screen sizes.  It features Google Maps integration, so that mapping and directions are available in the “Locations” section of the website.

“This effort makes absolutely clear that the diverse communities of Queens will remain at the heart of everything Queens Public Library does,” said Queens Public Library Board Chair Haeda Milhaltses. “The new website and identity are as beautiful as they are evocative of what the Library is about, and I could not be prouder to serve this incredible institution. On behalf of the Board of Trustees, I want to congratulate QPL's team for their hard work and vision for the Library now and for generations to come.”


Queens Public Library is one of the largest and busiest public library systems in the United States, dedicated to serving the most ethnically and culturally diverse area in the country. An independent, non-profit organization founded in 1896, Queens Public Library offers free access to a collection of more than 5 million books and other materials in multiple languages, technology and digital resources, and more than 87,500 educational, cultural, and civic programs a year. It consists of 65 locations, including branch libraries, a Central Library, seven adult learning centers, a technology lab, two universal pre-kindergartens, and two teen centers.

Contact: Elisabeth de Bourbon, 718-990-0704 or 917-499-0867