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Our CSL Public Library set to celebrate 50 successful years in business

The City of Côte Saint-Luc will be celebrating the 50-year anniversary of our  public library all day on Sunday, September 18 culminating with an outdoor concert and laser show behind the library. We have our fingers crossed for good weather, but all of these activities will proceed rain or shine.

People still love coming to the library for good books.

“There is a slew of free events for the whole family,” Mayor Mitchell Brownstein said. “There will be a special birthday-themed story time for kids, face-painting, library bingo with prizes, cake and much more. Don’t miss the concert by Vintage Wine highlighting hits from the 1960s and the laser show.”

The concert starts at 5:30pm. The laser show – originally scheduled for Canada Day – takes place at 7:30pm. For the full schedule of events, visit

We actually had library floats in parades.

Library Director Janine West and her staff have planned a wonderful day for all. We will be celebrating this anniversary throughout the year, so visit the library website and subscribe to our  e-newsletter and Facebook page to stay informed.

The city council established a citizens committee in December 1964 to look into establishing a public library. The city hired Eleanor London and the Côte Saint-Luc Public Library opened its doors on September 7, 1966. Its 4,322 square feet was originally located on the second floor of the Côte Saint-Luc Shopping Centre. It moved to its current 23,000 square feet of space in 1986.

That is Eleanor London with staff when our present library was under construction. Just to the left of her is a younger Janine West.

I feel very fortunate to be the city councillor responsible for Library and Culture, particularly at this time. Given the fact I am 53 and have lived in the community most of my life, I have many fond memories of this establishment.

It all began, of course, on the second floor of the Côte Saint-Luc Shopping Centre. That was where our original library was located. It was not a very large venue, but we did not know from anything else and the community was well served.

The move to our present-day facility was nothing less than extraordinary. Almost immediately we became recognized as having one of the finest public libraries in the province.  Over the years we evolved beyond a place to simply take out books. Students in the community come here to study in groups. There are computers to use, videos and DVDs to borrow

I recently spoke to Eleanor London, who said that due to health problems she will not be able to join us on September 18. She is a legend in our circles. Janine's immediate predecessor was Tanya Abramovitch, now our city manager on maternity leave. During part of the years we were a borough under the auspices of the city of Montreal, Lisa Milner oversaw the department.

“Having been part of this great library, this jewel of Côte Saint-Luc, for almost 35 of these 50 years, it is fair to say I have seen some substantive changes,” Janine said. “However, one thing has remained constant: our commitment to Eleanor London’s vision of the ‘people’s library’, a welcoming and personable community space where its staff go above and beyond to provide exceptional customer service.”

For more information about these events and programs, visit or contact the library’s Programs Department at 514-485-6900, ext. 4205.


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I joined the library in 1966, the year I graduated from Wagar! My library membership card starts with the number 1966! Love the library!!!

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