Late in 2015, we went 27 feet below Bryant Park to check in on the New York Public Library's stacks. About 17-feet below the lawn you'll find the Milstein Research Stacks, and now underneath that, a new space has been been built for the library's growing collections. Books and materials have now been relocated from the 105-year-old central stacks, an above-ground space with a yet-to-be-determined future. To get items into the hands of those that need them from the depths of Bryant Park, a conveyer system has been built. It's like a rollercoaster for literature!
The Library actually likens the system to a "state-of-the-art book train," which will "transport requested research materials from newly-expanded storage under Bryant Park to researchers throughout the library." The conveyer system features 24 individual red cars, all running on rails and "seamlessly and automatically [making the] transition from horizontal to vertical motion. The cars can each transport up to 30 pounds of materials at a time from the Library's recently-expanded underground storage facility to the iconic Rose Main Reading Room on the third floor," which reopens on October 5th.
The time to get from one end to the other: 5 minutes. You can watch some of the journey above.