November 1, 2015

The Library and partner Sit On It Detroit were recently featured in the Winter 2015 issue of, My Ford Magazine.


By Reed Jackson
Photography by Bridget Barrett


Driving down 7 Mile Road on the East Side, you notice that many basic amenities are absent. Like bus stop benches. People sit on trash cans, newspaper kiosks, anything they can find. To help rectify this, Kyle Bartell, 27, and Charlie Molnar, 24, students at Wayne State University, turn recycled wood into community-friendly items. For example, they turned slabs of a worn-out basketball court that a local high school gave them into a cafeteria table. The duo used the F-150’s tremendous towing capacity to haul thick square chunks of flooring to their huge downtown warehouse. Cluttered with tools and guarded by a friendly black Lab named Bailey, the studio is indicative of what young artisans can afford here. Over the past four years, Bartell and Molnar have used it to build around 40 public benches, many with unique touches, like a bookshelf for bus stops in front of public libraries.


“There’s strong community support,” Bartell says. “You just let people know what you’re doing and they’ll find a way to help you.”


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Detroit Public Library Friends Foundation

Detroit Public Library Foundation (d/b/a)


DPL Found

60 E. Milwaukee St. 

PO Box 6848

Detroit, MI 48202


501(c)3 Non profit 

EIN: 38-1387108