Saturday, April 04, 2009

Papercut Zine Library may have to move

Papercut Zine Library, which offers a 12,000 item free lending library plus concerts, may have to move by the end of June because, the library says, its landlord has put its Cambridge building, The Democracy Center (left), up for sale.

If the owner, the Foundation for Civic Leadership, does sell the property, it could also displace other activist organizations that make their home there, including Art Without Borders, Avaaz, Boston Mobilization, The Foundation for Civic Leadership, Sustainable Endowments, The Pacific Forest Trust and The Catholic Democrats.

Beyond saying “it’s a lot to do with the economy,” Papercut librarian Kimberly Boutin declined to get into detail about reasons for the potential sale. The Democracy Center has not yet responded to a call I put in yesterday. Cambridge assessors office documents say the Foundation for Civic Leadership has owned the building since 2002. (The facility seems to be three joined buildings, with parts dating back to 1800.)

Papercut has scheduled a public meeting to discuss its future at 7:30 p.m. April 23 at The Democracy Center, 45 Mt. Auburn St., Cambridge. (RSVP to or call 617-492-2600.)

“We are interested in exploring fundraising ideas, potential leads for new spaces, and potential partnership opportunities for the library,” it announced in an e-mail yesterday morning. “We would like to also take the opportunity to hear from library patrons and others about how you think the library could be improved, and what folks would like to see [in a] new space.”

Papercut, which marks its fourth birthday in May, has helped Boston Comics Roundtable organized the Boston Zine Fair -- in addition to presenting its own concerts and library. “It’s the largest collection of zines in the North East that we know of,” Boutin tells me. “…Most of us are cringing at the thought of moving our library.”


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