Skip to main content

'This is our second home': Montreal Children's Library at risk of closing after nearly 100 years


The Montreal Children's Library says it is in danger of shutting down after nearly 100 years in a low-income community.

The library operates out of a community centre in Saint Michel at 42nd Avenue and Pie-IX Boulevard.

Since 2006, the bilingual library has become an integral part of the community, according to head librarian Laurence Sauvage.

"Most of our patrons are regulars, they come almost every day, they come after school, they stay until closing, they do their homework, hang out with their friends," she said.

But in November, the area's school service centre (CSSDM) needs the space back to accommodate its growing student population.

The library has until September 30th to find a new space nearby or risk closing its doors.

The closest other library is three kilometres away.

"Us having to leave, I think, would be a real hardship for this community who rely on us and don't have another library that they could go to," said library board member Amanda Fritz.

It's a sentiment echoed by 13-year-old Geuseppe, who visited the library on Saturday.

"This is not just a library. This is our second home, to everyone in this place. This is the place where you can be yourself."

The library has been searching for a new space with the city's help, but so far, there is no solution.

In a statement to CTV News, the school service centre said it was "well aware of the impacts of this decision."

"We are working with the various municipal and governmental authorities to find solutions," it continued.

It says the move is necessary due to the dilapidated state of Saint-Noel-Chabanel school (Pavillon des Batisseurs), which will require a lot of work in order to welcome future students on time.

The service centre says it extended the library's temporary lease until September 30th while it plans renovations.

After that, it will allow the lease to be extended one month at a time until the plans are complete.

-With files from CTV News Montreal's Keila DePape Top Stories

Should you wait to buy or sell your home?

The Bank of Canada is expected to announce its key interest rate decision in less than two weeks. Last month, the bank lowered its key interest rate to 4.7 per cent, marking its first rate cut since March 2020.

Stay Connected