With an early turn-of-the-century beginning as a subscription library, the Manhattan Beach Library became part of the…More county system in January 1915. It is one of the oldest continuing branches in the L.A. County Library system.
The current 12,150-square-foot single-story building was erected on November 1, 1975, replacing a previous structure built at the same location in 1957. Plans for renovating the space—including the addition of a second floor—are currently before the City Council.
The library serves a population of more than 35,000 in a 3.87-square-mile area that extends from the beach eastward.
The library's collection totals more than 125,000 items, including 95,000 adult and children's books; more than 200 magazine and newspaper subscriptions; thousands of feature films and documentaries on both DVD and VHS formats; microfilm of local historical newspapers from the South Bay and other historical materials on Manhattan Beach; as well as City Council documents and related studies and reports.
In addition to a wide variety of California history books, surfing books and videos, the collection includes foreign language materials in Spanish, French and German.
Many library-sponsored activities for adults and children take place in the building's Community Room, including book discussion groups, the Coffee and Classics Film series and story time for toddlers. The room is also used as a meeting space for local groups depending on availability.
The Manhattan Beach Friends of the Library sponsors monthly book sales at the library, offering a wide variety of books and audio visual materials, as well as an ongoing book sale and DVD rental collection that is consistently updated.
Library parking is provided in the free, two-hour Civic Center parking lot on 15th Street, directly behind the library and City Hall. There is also metered parking available in the underground structure just below the lot, as well as across the street from the library entrance along Highland Avenue.