Your New Palatial Study Haunt: NYPL’s Reading Room

NYPL Public Reading Room

by Nick Palmer and Sarah Jones

Located at Fifth Avenue and Fortieth Street, the New York Public Library is a great place to escape the city– plus, it’s close to Parson’s 560 Fashion Avenue campus.  The reading rooms are quiet and spacious, and there are tons of computers that you can use. The library itself is a grandiose building with a huge entrance with stained glass windows and stone lions at rest, flanking the doorway.  It is like a massive country estate right in the middle of the city’s hustle and bustle.  Tourists are everywhere, but if you live in New York you learn to ignore them easily.

The library is super-atmospheric; it’s like a museum for knowledge. Climbing the steps up and into the building brings you to ever higher levels of open-air rooms full of heavy wooden molding and painted ceilings.  You can just feel that in secret rooms locked away there are treasured masterpieces. If you want a bit of solitude to just chill out, or need some quiet space to study, no one will bother you here. There are many other people, but they won’t get in your way because there is room enough for an army of people in the building.

Bonus: Applying for a library card is seriously easy and takes five minutes at one of the terminals on the third floor.  That said, this library is a research library which means that no books leave the building, so if you’re looking for fiction and literature to check out, go catty corner across the street to the Mid -Manhattan library. There, you’ll be able to pick up your recently applied for card and check out classics like Wuthering Heights or tween dramas like Vampire High.