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Thursday, December 13, 2012

$1 million gift from O’Regan’s Automotive Group to the Halifax CentraI Library announced

Halifax, NS– A $1 million gift from O'Regan's Automotive Group to the Halifax CentraI Library was announced on Thursday, December 13 by Judith Hare, Halifax Public Libraries' CEO. The gift, in memory of the late Paul O'Regan, is the single largest gift (other than a bequest) to a public library in Nova Scotia.

"The Library is deeply grateful for this transformational gift," says Judith Hare, CEO of the Halifax Public Libraries. "The generosity of O'Regan's will help us to ensure that the inside of the library is completed to the same level of quality as our iconic exterior design."

In honour of the unprecedented gift, the Library will name a popular area of the interior—the large public space on the main floor that opens onto the Queen Street plaza—Paul O'Regan Hall. "The performance area has captured the imagination of people and it is an honour to name this space in memory of Paul O'Regan," says Hare. According to the O'Regan family, an open, public area is an appropriate addition to the legacy of a man who believed in building community and supporting accessibility to lifelong learning.

"More than anything, my father loved to bring people together," says Sean O'Regan, son of Paul O'Regan and CEO of O'Regan's Automotive Group. "As a teacher and business man, he would have greatly enjoyed this space—how it's built for gathering, community, performances, and learning."

Paul O'Regan Hall will function as an exemplary 'third space' for HRM citizens and Nova Scotians. It will be an expansive public gathering place: an open reading area in the daytime and a 250-seat performance hall at night. Acoustic panels will be able to close off the space, which will also feature professional lighting and sound along with a movie theatre quality screen. Paul O'Regan Hall will be open for bookings by the public as well as the Library.