Any one who knows me knows that I love books and libraries. I have been a huge fan of libraries since my younger days when a very kind librarian took me under her wing. Mrs. Chandler made a immature, awkward, shy young girl feel important. She always had time for me. Maybe that was the whole thing. She always made me feel like I was really important. I wrote a post about her here if you want to wander over to read it. I’ll be right here when you come back.
I fall in love easily with libraries. You might remember my raving about the North Carolina State University Library a couple years ago. You can read that post here.
It should be no surprise that on a recent trip to Seattle I convinced Chris to explore the Central Library that is located at 1000 Fourth Avenue. The structure is imposing from the outside but in a beautiful way. When we visited it was buzzing with activity and I suspect that is the case most days. It is definitely a library that is used.
A few facts about the library:
- It opened in May 2004.
- Dutch architect Rem Koolhaas and former Seattleite Joshua Ramus were principal designers on the project, working closely with the Library’s board, staff and the public during its development phase.
- The project of $165.5 million was fined through a 1998 Libraries for All bond measure.
- It is 363,000 square feet with 11 levels.
- It has the capacity for more than 1.4 million books and materials.
- It has over 400 public computers and wireless internet access.
I also found out that it has a very unique book delivery system that basically is a fabric conveyor belt that gently wraps around the books to protect them as they travel around they library. Most of this is hidden from public view which is why I did not see it in action. Technology at its best, don’t you think?
Chris and I wandered around and loved the Spiral which includes levels 6 through 9. The Spiral houses the majority of the nonfiction that the library has in a continuous run with floor mats that show the Dewey Decimal numbers that correlate with the nearby stacks.
But the most fun thing was the elevator which I shared in an earlier post entitled Stairway to Heaven. Don’t you love it?
If you are a library lover like me do you have a favorite library to share? I would love to hear all about it in the comment section. Every comment this month goes to support CROP Walk — our Comments for a Cause.
To learn more about the Central Library in Seattle check out their website here.