WGBH’s Broadcast Studio and Cafe Inside the Boston Public Library Opens This Week

Mayor Marty Walsh will be its first guest.

Photo courtesy WGBH

Photo courtesy WGBH

Next time you go to return a library book, you just might see the mayor—or the governor, the AG, or hey, even Jim Braude.

WGBH’s broadcast studio inside the Boston Public Library’s newly renovated Johnson Building opens Friday, starting with a live episode of Boston Public Radio at 11 a.m.. The grand opening will coincide with the show’s monthly “Ask the Mayor” segment, making Mayor Marty Walsh its first-ever guest.

“This marks a new era of civic engagement, with two major Boston public institutions embarking on a world-first endeavor to provide citizens with open access to trusted information and educational content,” WGBH COO Ben Godley said in a release. “We are thrilled to be in the heart of the city, partnering with the Boston Public Library and sharing in the vibrancy of our city and region.”

The state-of-the-art TV and radio facility includes a news desk, three TV cameras, nine video monitors, radio microphones, and a news ticker. The studio will share the 4,000-square-foot space with the Newsfeed Cafe, a fast-casual restaurant owned by The Catered Affair, which already operates the BPL’s Courtyard Restaurant and Map Room Café.

The Catered Affair will have a 750-piece, BPL-shaped cake on hand for the maiden broadcast, served to library visitors at 2 p.m. Friday—an auspicious start, to be sure.