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Last updated: August 01. 2013 2:55AM - 386 Views
Associated Press



In this Monday, July 22, 2013 photo, pedestrians walk past the main branch of the New York Public Library in New York, Monday, July 22, 2013. Plans for a major change within the New York Public Library’s landmark main building have kindled an intellectual culture clash over its direction and the future of libraries themselves. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)
In this Monday, July 22, 2013 photo, pedestrians walk past the main branch of the New York Public Library in New York, Monday, July 22, 2013. Plans for a major change within the New York Public Library’s landmark main building have kindled an intellectual culture clash over its direction and the future of libraries themselves. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)
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(AP) Plans for a major change within the New York Public Library's landmark main building have kindled an intellectual culture clash over its direction and the future of libraries themselves.


The $300 million-plus proposal entails moving millions of books out of the Fifth Avenue building's research stacks and into storage. That would make way for a lending library with other volumes, computers and a cafe.


Two other nearby library spaces would be sold to help pay for it.


Library officials say the plan will save the research books and millions of dollars, among other benefits.


But some scholars, preservationists and other critics say the project will turn a singular institution into library lite.


The controversy comes amid broader debate about libraries' role when information is only a touchscreen away.


Associated Press
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