Cheng San Public Library



Cheng San Public Library is located in Hougang. It is the third library of the National Library Board (NLB) to be located in a shopping mall, and the first to acquire and display works by local artists in an effort to promote the local arts scene.1 It was officially opened on 6 March 1997 by then member of Parliament for the Cheng San Group Representation Constituency, Zainul Abidin Rasheed.

History
Cheng San Public Library serves the residents of Hougang, Cheng San, Serangoon Central and Upper Paya Lebar. As at 2014, the library has a collection comprising 178,068 books, 2,630 audiovisual items and 4,653 magazines.3 Originally known as Cheng San Community Library, it was renamed Cheng San Public Library in 2008.

In the financial year ending March 2011, Cheng San Public Library served more than 1,425,207 visitors and registered 1,401,683 book loans.5 It is also the first library to adopt the cluster concept for multimedia services.6

Art display
The public library displays works by local artists in an effort to promote the local arts scene and to foster art appreciation among library users. This practice of featuring local artworks was subsequently followed in other libraries. Cheng San Public Library’s acquired art collection includes sculptures and paintings of both known and budding artists such as Ng Eng Teng, Iskandar Jalil, Hassan Z. Rahim, Siak Fahn-Ein and Lim Tiong Ghee.7

Description
Cheng San Public Library spans 1,467 sq m.8 It houses a customer service counter, a storytelling room as well as sections for children, adults and young people. Books and periodicals for lending are available in the four official languages. It is a fully computerised library with eight multimedia stations, a bookdrop service, self-check borrowing machines as well as self-service borrowers’ enquiry service and payment terminals.9 Library users can access the Online Public Access Catalogue, read daily newspapers and make use of the digital library services.10 

Programmes
Storytelling sessions for children are held regularly at the library, while schools also bring their students to the library for class visits to learn more about the library collection and services. In addition to the information literacy and reading programmes for schoolchildren, special programmes – such as art and craft lessons, puppet shows, magic shows and special storytelling sessions – are held during school holidays. Adults can participate in user education programmes and parenting talks.11

In 2013, the library completed a comprehensive upgrading that gave it a new look and increased its seating capacity.12 A popular hangout for students from the nearby schools, Cheng San Public Library now boasts a more modern look with stylish furniture to appeal to the younger readers aged seven to 18.13



Author
Naidu Ratnala Thulaja



References
1.
Gwee, J., & Neo, B. S. (2013, March). A library for the people: A case study of the National Library Board. Retrieved 2016, May 6 from Civil Service College website: https://www.cscollege.gov.sg/knowledge/pages/a-library-for-the-people-a-case-study-of-the-national-library-board.aspx 
2.
Teoh, E. (1997, March 7). $15.6 m plan to upgrade six public librariesThe Straits Times, p. 46. Retrieved from NewspaperSG.
3.
National Library Board. (2014, September 1). Cheng San Public Library. Retrieved 2016, May 6 from National Library Board website: http://www.nlb.gov.sg/Portals/0/library/documents/Cheng San Public Library - Fact Sheet.pdf
4.
National Library Board. (n.d.). National Library Board annual report 2008/2009. Retrieved 2016, June 15 from National Library Board website: https://www.nlb.gov.sg/Portals/0/Reports/fy08/
5.
National Library Board. (n.d.). National Library Board annual report FY2010/2011: Statistical summary, p. 49. Retrieved 2016, June 15 from National Library Board website: https://www.nlb.gov.sg/Portals/0/Reports/fy10/content/NLB_AR10_11_statistical summary.pdf
6.
National Library Board. (2014, September 1). Cheng San Public Library. Retrieved 2016, May 6 from National Library Board website: http://www.nlb.gov.sg/Portals/0/library/documents/Cheng%20San%20Public%20Library%20-%20Fact%20Sheet.pdf 
7.
National Library Board. (2014, September 1). Cheng San Public Library. Retrieved 2016, May 6 from National Library Board website: http://www.nlb.gov.sg/Portals/0/library/documents/Cheng%20San%20Public%20Library%20-%20Fact%20Sheet.pdf
8.
National Library Board. (2014, September 1). Cheng San Public Library. Retrieved 2016, May 6 from National Library Board website: http://www.nlb.gov.sg/Portals/0/library/documents/Cheng%20San%20Public%20Library%20-%20Fact%20Sheet.pdf
9.
Changing with the times. (1997, April 11). The Straits Times, p. 40. Retrieved from NewspaperSG.
10.
National Library. (1997). Cheng San Community Library. Singapore: Author. (Call no.: RCLOS NC9)
11.
National Library Board. (2014, September 1). Cheng San Public Library. Retrieved May 6, 2016, from National Library Board website: http://www.nlb.gov.sg/Portals/0/library/documents/Cheng%20San%20Public%20Library%20-%20Fact%20Sheet.pdf 
12.
National Library Board. (2014, September 1). Cheng San Public Library. Retrieved May 6, 2016, from http://www.nlb.gov.sg/Portals/0/library/documents/Cheng%20San%20Public%20Library%20-%20Fact%20Sheet.pdf
13.
Zaccheus, M. (2013, April 14). Libraries now reflect their communities. The Straits Times, p. 13. Retrieved from NewspaperSG.



The information in this article is valid as at 2016 and correct as far as we are able to ascertain from our sources. It is not intended to be an exhaustive or complete history of the subject. Please contact the Library for further reading materials on the topic.

Subject
Libraries
Architecture and Landscape>>Building Types>>Public Buildings>>Libraries
Public libraries--Singapore
Branch libraries—Singapore
Law and government>>Culture and community>>Public libraries
Science and technology>>Library and information science>>Library and information services