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Warren — Sandra Deneka loves to read and has gone to libraries in the city at least two or three times a week.

But the nearest library closed in 2014.

Now, she has one within walking distance: the Dorothy M. Busch Library Branch.

Deneka, 76, was one of nearly 100 people who gathered Thursday to celebrate the grand reopening of Warren’s first new library in 53 years.

The original building, built in 1963, was 4,700 square feet. In 2015, the building closed for reconstruction for a $2.3 million project that took over a year to complete.

“It’s going to be in the heart of the older section of Warren, and the most important thing is that we have shown we have interest in the ‘forgotten city,’ ” said Warren’s mayor, James Fouts. “Sometimes people look at Warren as divided by the expressway between north and south, and this is reminding the south that we are working with you.” .

The library is located on Ryan, south of Nine Mile across from Fitzgerald High School. That gives high school students access to computers, archives and quiet space.

The upgraded 6,600-square-foot facility includes a 50-person community room, 24 computers, study rooms that seat six, high-speed Wi-Fi, movies, audio books, CDs and books.

The library also has a kids’ center with Krayon Kiosks and four iPads with child-friendly applications.

Warren has three other libraries: Civic Center, Miller and Burnette. Another library is planned for the Nine Mile-Van Dyke neighborhood. Construction will start in a year, with a planned opening by 2019.

Fouts said the reopened Busch library is part of a renewed investment in Warren.

“I’ve recently met with developers and we planned a lot for the downtown area including a destination hotel near City Hall,” Fouts said. “Hopefully, it’ll encourage people to move into the neighborhoods, businesses to invest in Warren and people to be active in Warren.”

Nancy Rodriguez, attended the library opening and checked out eight books and two movies. She said she has been going to libraries since she was 10.

“Reading is such a good way to explore,” she said. “There are so many possibilities and it doesn’t cost anything.”.

The library is named for Dorothy Busch, who helped form the original Warren Community Library and was a librarian. She served on the Library Commission for more than 25 years. Busch died in 1961.

The large, 50-seat community room is dedicated to Hilary Kutella, who served on the Fitzgerald Public Schools Board of Education and was a part of the community for more than 50 years.

“I’m so honored,” Kutella said. “I have no words.”

srahal@detroitnews.com

(313) 222-1855

Twitter: @SarahRahal

Library hours

The library is open noon to 8 p.m. Monday and Wednesday, and 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday at 23333 Ryan Road.

A late fee of 25 cents will be charged for books and $1 for movies each day an item is past its due date.

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