On May 23, 2023…
Lifelong Fanwood resident donates $20,000 to new Fanwood Memorial Library Foundation
(Fanwood, NJ)– The new Fanwood Memorial Library Foundation received its first donation this week in the memory of a resident who lived across the street from the former library and spent hours there reading.
The family of Carlo Bravo, who died one year ago on May 24th, the day after his 56th birthday, donated $20 thousand to the nascent foundation. Gino Bravo, Carlo’s brother, presented the check to members of the Library Foundation, Friends of the Fanwood Library and the library Board of Trustees at the current temporary library location in the historic train station on North Avenue. The money, along with other funds to be raised by the foundation, will benefit the new library currently under construction at North Avenue and Tillotson Road.
In presenting the check, Mr. Bravo cited his brother’s love of the library having spent countless hours reading and borrowing books about the Vietnam war. Carlo was a huge war history buff and volunteered his time at the veterans hospital in Lyons.

“We are so very grateful for this donation and to the Bravo family’s commitment to our new library,” said Dan Weiss, Library Director. “The library will be commemorating the Bravo family’s donation by naming its new business center the Carlo Bravo Business Center. The Bravos have lived across the street from the library for years, and Carlo Bravo was born and raised in Fanwood.

“The story of Carlo and the Bravo family is a true Fanwood story,” remarked Mayor Colleen Mahr. “I thank them for their generous donation and look forward to inaugurating the new library and business center in Carlo’s name.” Also present at the event was Borough Council President Jeff Banks and Neil Schembre, secretary of the Fanwood Foundation, which has temporary custody of the donation until the library foundation’s charter is finalized.

AND on May 24, 2023 the project took a major step forward as the steel structure began to take shape!



Thanks to Tom Kranz, Fanwood’s Public Information Officer, for help with the updates and for this great video from April 5, 2003; Antonios Panagopoulos, Fanwood Borough Engineer, for all his hard work and especially for the amazing aerial drone shots; and to Kyle Pollara, Construction Site Manager (Epic Management), for holding everyone’s nose to the grindstone and for keeping the project rolling along smoothly and on schedule.

UPDATE March 2023
The construction project is moving ahead. The demolition of the old library was completed in January of this year, and M&M Construction have begun their work. The site has been prepared, forms are being constructed and concrete poured for the footings in preparation for the slab the building will sit on.

In the drone shot below, you can see the beginnings of the outline of the perimeter of the new facility starting to take shape on the site.

<<< Click HERE for one last bittersweet fly-through of the old building.>>>

The old library is taken down – January 2023

Groundbreaking Ceremony for the new Library! February 20, 2023


FML PR sheet 8-2022A


The project to construct a new Fanwood Memorial Library is actively underway. The design details were approved by the Planning Board at their April meeting, and bid documents are being developed. The library will remain in our current building through the summer, and, after summer reading initiatives are finished, in early fall the project documents will be made available to contractors for public bidding. The library will then relocate into a temporary location for the duration of the construction (More details on the location and services available coming soon.) The project, which will result in a fantastic new 2-story building on the same site, will more than double the size of the current facility. The new facility will open the library to people of all ages and abilities, will provide more flexibility and better spaces, will support current and emerging technology, and create a building that will be a sustainable community asset.

When completed, the building with its newly configured spaces and upgraded services will be in an excellent position to welcome: children in strollers and the disabled in wheelchairs; teens and tweens and their electronic explorations; home workers and entrepreneurs and their need to recharge and connect; and seniors to read and relax. Community groups will have a place to meet, perform, and present.

The fact that Fanwood was one of only 38 projects approved out of over 129 applicants from around the state, speaks loudly to our need, the length of time and thought that we have given this issue over the years, and the impressive quality of our application,” said Dan Weiss, library director. “This new facility will allow us to build on the services we currently provide, and to expand them for all of our users now and well into the future. We can be responsive to unknown future needs and trends, and state grant matching funds will enable Fanwood to build a beautiful new facility, that we would not have otherwise been able to afford on our own; a 21st-century library we can all take pride in that delivers a substantial return on investment because it reflects the values, needs, and expectations of our town.

We currently anticipate cutting the ribbon on the new facility by summer of 2024.

FML1951 FML1980

The original library on this site was built in 1951 for a community of about 3,200 residents. An addition was added in 1980.

see the project FAQs here

For more information on the project or with questions, contact Dan Weiss, library director.