Hoover Public Library
The Hoover Public Library, located near the Hoover Municipal Complex at 200 Municipal Drive, serves the city of Hoover and is the busiest individual member of the Jefferson County Library Cooperative.
It was named "Best Library in Birmingham" by Birmingham magazine in 1994 and ranked among the nation's top four libraries in Library Journals 1997 Library of the Year awards. The director is Amanda Borden. The former director was Linda Andrews who retired on December 31, 2016.
The Hoover Public Library sponsors the annual Southern Voices Conference as well as frequent concerts, lectures, film screenings and other events in its 250-seat theater.
The library's creation was spurred by the fund-raising and lobbying efforts of the Friends of the Hoover Public Library, beginning in 1982. Paul and Mary Lou Allen headed the 28 founding members who worked with Mayor Frank Skinner, Jr to win the City Council's support. The council made a $100,000 appropriation that December and Skinner appointed Allen, Philip Benefield, George Farmer, Eloise Martens and Harold Shepherd to the first library board, challenging them to have a library opened within 9 months.
The board leased 4000-square-foot space at River Oaks Village and hired Linda Andrews as the new library's director. 8,000 volumes were purchased as the library's initial holdings, and the new public library opened its doors on October 8, 1983. The holdings grew quickly through donations and, in November, 1985 the library moved into 10,000 square feet on the second floor of the Hoover Municipal Complex. Within five years, it became the fourth busiest lending library in the state. By 1987 the library was already working with Evan M. Terry Associates, architects, on plans for a new library building. The funding came from Hoover's 1990 bond issue. Ground was broken across Old Rocky Ridge Road in December of that year, and the new 45,000 square-foot facility opened its doors on February 2, 1992.
From October 1999 through April 2001 the library underwent a long sequence of additions and renovations to expand and update its facilities. Among the additions was a Coffee-ology cafe, which was rebranded as Customs Cafe in 2009 and then as a second location of East 59 Cafe in 2016.
- Ellaby, Liz (September 12, 2007) "Library founders celebrate 25th anniversary." The Birmingham News
- Borden, Amanda (October 2, 2013) "Hoover Public Library celebrates thirty years of service." The Birmingham News
- Anderson, Jon (December 26, 2016) "New director Amanda Borden unveils vision for Hoover Public Library." Hoover Sun
- Hoover Public Library website