National Library of Public Information, Taiwan

The view of National Library of Public Information
The view of National Library of Public Information

Name of the Library: National Library of Public Information
Parent Organisation: Ministry of Education

Street Address: No.100, Wuquan S. Rd., South Dist., Taichung City, Taiwan.
Postal Address: 40246
Telephone :+886-4-22625100
Web Address:
Library Email:

Type of Library: Central/ Main Library
Population served: 23,000,000
Project Type: New Building
Size (square metres): 41,797
Date of Completion: 16/5/2012
Architect: J.J.Pan and Partners, Architects and Planners

Taiwan 2

The National Library of Public Information was established on 1923, and it has been relocated and renamed three times. The main purpose of the library is to serve everyone, and the library provides a diverse service to suit all age group’s need. The library now embraces the digital era, combines virtual and physical spaces and resources, and provides service with an innovated way. The library moved to the new building on 3rd of June 2012, and changes the name on the 1st of January to 「The National Library of Public Information」. The NLPI is now a national library that can be enjoyed by the public on both physical and virtual environment. They can read, discover, relax, and achieve lifelong learning under the care of NLPI.

The genesis of the design is the decision to directly confront the challenges and opportunities presented by the dynamic nature of digital media. Inspirations for the massing concept include the Mobius strip and Klein bottle, both of which explore solid and void, form and formless.

In the interior, each floor’s spatial arrangement, color and furniture design takes its cue from the corresponding outside view – event, trunk, crown, the city skyline, and cloud. The result is clear differentiation of the various program areas while the building’s abundant glazing fosters an outside-in effect.

1F Digital Lobby: Designed as a space to feature the flow of information, the use of orange-red color symbolizes the energy of the crowd with the information desk as the focus.
The children learning area employs a forest and animal theme with colorful elements such as bookshelves that recall hedges to create a spatial experience.
2F Multimedia: Vertical wood arches and light pillar echo the tree trunks outside the windows
3F Periodicals: The tree crowns are transformed into bookshelves and furniture for reading, creating an atmosphere of being in the treetop.
4F Science and Technology: Taking its cue from the urban skyline, the bookshelves are staggered in height and feature brightly painted, lighting integrated display frames that evoke city lights through windows.
5F Humanities: The cloud-like curved white furniture echoes the blue sky above and is enhanced by the natural light filtered through the round skylights.

The Children’s Library
The Children’s Library

The building’s free-formed skin with its curved planes and organic tree trunk-shaped columns tested the limits of design and construction in Taiwan. Starting with the structural slanted columns and slab edges, then a series of zigzagging curtain wall sub-frames that approximates the final undulating surface, the skin’s design was conceived from the inside-out. Finally, a composite wall system with integrated EPS insulation that molds to the folding surfaces, which are then cladded with pearl-white round mosaic tiles of eight different sizes enabling the skin to achieve a monocoque appearance. Throughout the process, advanced 3D design software and several on-site mock-ups were utilized.

Specific examples of sustainable features include the curved exterior light-weight composite wall system with integrated insulation. The skylight and inclining windows in the reading area introduce natural light into the reading area effectively. The underground public reading room and the recessed volumes of the ground floor facilitate natural air convection.

The Innovated Facilities include Digital Experience Areas, Digital Leisure Center, Multi-Cultural Services, augmented reality(AR)for children reading, lucky books interactive passageway, interactive story room, RFID automatic book sorting system and colored book labels,  book-carrying robot – Bopi, Smart Book Shelf Window ,etc.
In Incorporating eReading@your library Program with e-Book Online Service, and Digital Resource Promotion Service, NLPI has been cooperating with different sectors/fields to help citizens in 24 remote and disadvantaged villages/towns to free use of technology and the Internet to engage in e-reading and life-long learning and the achievement of the project has been identified and highly appreciated. As a result, NLPI is planning to replicate the service mode of the project and expand the services to sustain this service in the future.



Awards, case studies, further information
1. Excellence in World Association of Chinese Architects Academic Award (2013)
2. Gold Award, The International Design Awards for Architecture (2012)
3. Innovative Design of the Year, The 10th Golden Torch Awards (2012)


Drammensbiblioteket – The Combined Library of Drammen, Norway

Drammen bibliotek mot elva

Name of the Library:  Drammensbiblioteket – The Combined Library of Drammen:

City Library of Drammen
College Library of Buskerud and Vestfold University College, Campus Drammen
County Library of Buskerud

Parent Organisations:

Municipality of Drammen
Buskerud and Vestfold University College
Buskerud County
Street Address: Grønland 58b, 3045 Drammen
Postal Address: Postboks 3554, N-3007 Drammen, NORWAY
Telephone: +47 32 04 54 00
Library Email:

Drammen bibliotek mot mølla
Type of Library: Central/Main Library, Joint use, Multipurpose building, Regional Library

Population served:
Municipality of Drammen:  64. 597 inhabitants.
Buskerud and Vestfold University College, Campus Drammen: 1430 students.
Buskerud County: 269.000.
Project Type: New Building
Size: (square meters): Total area: 5 500 sq m. Public area: 4 600 sq m
Date of Completion: Opened at 26.2.2007
Architect: LPO arkitektur & design,

Drammen bibliotek


University of Warsaw Library, Poland

Warsaw Wniwersity Library inside
Warsaw University Library interior


Name of the Library: University of  Warsaw Library
Parent Organisation: University of  Warsaw

Street Address: ul. Dobra 56/66
Postal Address: 00-312 Warszawa
Telephone : +48 22 55 25 660
Web Address:
Library Email:       

Type of Library:  Central/ Main
Population served: 2,500 per day
Project Type:
New Building
Size (square metres):  Total surface: 60 000 m 2 Library’s surface: 40 000 m 2 There are 1000 seats for readers
Date of Completion:  December 1999
Architect:Marek Budzyński, Zbigniew Badowski

Warsaw University Library exterior
Warsaw University Library exterior

The University of Warsaw Library is situated in Powiśle district, in the vicinity of the Old Town,  The Royal Route (Krakowskie Przedmieście street), the University Campus and  the Vistula river.
The University of Warsaw Library was founded in 1816. It is the main library of the University and one of the three largest collections of scholarly books in Poland.

The open stacks are organized according to the Library of Congress Classification system and the open stacks surface is divided in eight subject-areas.

The building consists of two parts : the front crescent-shape edifice assigned for commercial purpose (shops, cafes, offices) and the main 6-storey high building (2 underground levels – parking lot, shops, bowling center – temporarily rented, will accommodate the Library’s storage in the future) . Both parts are connected by a passage-way covered with a glazed roof. Reinforced concrete, glass and steel are distinctive features of the Library’s architecture. Interior design is also very minimalist – all technical installations (air condition, pipes) are not hidden. A white suspended ceiling is used mostly in the reading areas because of acoustic reasons. The Library’s furnishing, designed specially for the interior, is made from steel, glass and concrete, too. The dominating color is grey. Only the upper part becomes green (the glass-supporting construction). Other colors are “painted” by books and people. There are two entrances to the Library on the ground level – from the south and from the north. They lead to the passage where cloakrooms, exhibition hall, a restaurant and shops are situated. There are also Acquisition Department and Preservation and Conservation Department. A big area is taken by the Library’s storage. The crescent-shape edifice is located on the west from the main building. From the passage a glass door opens to the Library. Above the entrance a huge copper book with Latin inscription HINC OMNIA welcomes visitors. A high flight of steps topped by four columns, leads to the catalogue hall on level 1. Here can be found: catalogues (online and paper – alphabetic and subject catalogues), Reference Desk, Circulation Desk, Interlibrary Loan, Information and Public Service Department and open stacks of four subjects (Language. Literature; Philosophy. Psychology. Religion. Education; History; Geography. Mathematical, Natural and Applied Sciences). The part inaccessible for visitors contains Technical Services Department and NUKAT Center. On level 2 subject areas of: Law. Political Science; Sociology. Anthropology; General Works. Library Science; Music. Architecture. Fine Arts are situated. There are also: the main Reading Room, Current Periodicals Reading Room, Textbooks Collection, Administration Department, Tea Pavilion and NUKAT Center. Computer Department and Serials Department are not accessible for visitors. Level 3 is assigned for Special Collection Rooms (Early Imprints, Print Room, Manuscripts, Maps Collection, Ephemera, Music Collection) and Austrian Library. Part of the complex of the buildings is taken by the Faculty of Law and Administration (entrance from Lipowa street).

The building of the Library is surrounded by green. The façade carrying a huge elevated inscription “ BIBLIOTEKA UNIWERSYTECKA”  is divided by 4 entrances leading to the passage. Under the inscription there are 8 big copper panels (4 to 7 meters) presenting the realm of knowledge, memory and writing. There are excerpts from a Polish Renaissance poet Jan Kochanowski, from Plato, an old-Russian chronicle, from Arabic and Indian classics and from the Bible. There is a score by composer Karol Szymanowski (his works are in the collection of Music Collection) and a sample of mathematical formulas.

The Library viewed from the garden
The Library viewed from the garden

Awards, case studies, further information

  • Sienkiewicz Medal and Diploma of Recognition awarded by the Foundation Sienkiewicz (2000)
  • Order Bibliotheca Magna Perennisque awarded by the PLA (2001)
  • The 2002 edition of the awards of the Minister of Infrastructure project of the University Library in Warsaw by prof. Marek Budzynski and Zbigniew Badowski team was awarded the first prize in the field of “Architecture and Construction” for:
    – Outstanding architectural qualities, functional and visual
    – Implementation of the innovative open library that creates unlimited spatial and organizational barriers to contact with books,  Exceptional architectural masterpiece inspired to organize building on the Vistula, – Unique link between ecological architecture with high technique and technology.
  • The granting of awards WIK – SIGN IN YES by monthly WiK – Warsaw and Culture. The award was conferred in the category: PLACE (2004)
  • First prize in the residents plebiscite on positive place in Warsaw, organized by Clear Channel as part of the project Positive City, foundation Bęc Zmiana and “Gazeta Stołeczna” (2005)


Odense Music Library, Denmark

Name of the Library: Odense Music Library
Parent Organisation: Odense Central Library
Address and Contact Details
Street Address: Østre Stationsvej 33
Postal Address: 5000  Odense C
Telephone :  + 45 65514444
Web Address
Library Email

Type of Library:  Central/ Main Library  , Special Library
Population served: 195.000
Project Type:  New Building
Size (square metres): 1200 m2
Date of Completion building 1914 – library summer 2013
Architect Heinrich Wenck

The building is the old central station in Odense from 1914 – and in 2013 Odense Music Library moved into the historical landmark building. The “wow” factor is big when you walk through the door and sees the fantastic interior – and it is really old meets modern. Odense Music Library is the biggest public library music collection in the Nordic countries – and must be one of the biggest worldwide. Both the physical collection and the digital music collection are vast.
At the same time the music library constantly pushes the borders for how to promote music to Odense’s patrons – It has its own music studio for the (semi) professionals, and an instrumental zone with drums, keyboards, guitars, bass and a lot other instruments you can just play – including sheet music writing software. All sponsored by Roland and 4Sound.

The music Library is a hub for all musical life in Odense – and works together with all relevant music institutions and persons, including the symphony orchestra, the music school, venues and commercial music stores. At the same the Music library has exhibitions and  concerts from advanced small niche genres to local bands first concert in public. Many events are arranged by the patrons themselves.

Check it out in the virtual 3D visit on – (NB the instrumental zone on the top floor was not finished yet)


Mediothek Krefeld, Germany

Mediothek Krefeld Außenaufnahme Mediothek
Name of the Library  Mediothek Krefeld
Parent Organisation:  Stadt Krefeld

Street Address:   Theaterplatz 2
Postal Address:  47798 Krefeld Germany
Telephone :  +492151862750
Web Address
Library Email

Type of Library:  Central
Population served:   240.000
Project Type:  New Building
Size (square metres):  4.000
Date of Completion:  1.8.2008
Architect:  HPP  Hentrich, Petschnigg und Partner Düsseldorf / Interior by UKW Usinger Klein-Wiele Krefeld

Mediothek Krefeld
1.Der rund 4000 qm große Bau mit Tiefgarage präsentiert sich mit einer modernen Architektursprache, bei der die einzelnen Bestandsebenen versetzt um ein zentrales Glasdach mit darunterliegendem freien Luftraum herum angeordnet sind. Rampen als zentrales Erschließungselement verbinden stufenlos alle Ebenen des Gebäudes. Die Aufsehen erregende Inneneinrichtung mit eigens für diesen Bau entworfenen Regalsystemen und das Farbkonzept, bei dem Weiß, Rot und Orange dominieren, macht die Mediothek Krefeld zu einem Markenzeichen.

Die innovative Technik ermöglicht den Kunden die komplette Selbstbedienung für Ausleihe und Rückgabe der Medien sowie die Zahlung von Gebühren. Hierfür wurden alle Medien mit RFID-Transpondern ausgestattet. Die Ausleihe erfolgt über 4 Selbstverbuchungsterminals, für die Rückgabe stehen 2 Innen- sowie ein Außenschalter zur Verfügung, der auch außerhalb der Öffnungszeiten zugänglich ist. Eine Sortieranlage und ein Gebührenautomat vervollständigen die Technik.

Infolge konsequent betriebswirtschaftlicher Ausrichtung überdurchschnittliche Ergebnisse bei begrenzten Ressourcen (in den letzten Jahren regelmäßig ca. 1,2 Millionen Ausleihen bei einem Bestand von rund 220.000 Medien (durchschnittlicher Umsatz 5,5), 28 Planstellen und einem Jahreszuschussbedarf von rund 1,8 Millionen Euro.  Kostendeckungsgrad nahezu 25 Prozent. Herausragendes Konzept im Bereich der Leseförderung. Überdurchschnittliche Erfolge im Bemühen um Sponsoring (2011 rund 70.000 Euro). Sehr gute Präsenz in Öffentlichkeit und Medien. Intensive Zusammenarbeit mit anderen Institutionen vor Ort. Regionale Zusammenarbeit mit den Bibliotheken Neuss und Mönchengladbach (BNN – Bibliotheksnetzwerk Niederrhein). Aufbau eines starken Netzwerkes in Verwaltung und Wirtschaft       (Wirtschaftsförderungsgesellschaft, Mitglied im Marketingclub Krefeld). Innovativer Einsatz von Technik (komplette Umrüstung auf Selbstverbuchung mittels RFID-Technik, Sortieranlage mit Außenrückgabe auch außerhalb der Öffnungszeiten.  Entwicklung und Anwendung eines QM-Konzeptes. Einbringung internationaler Erfahrungen und Ideen in die  Konzeption durch zahlreiche Auslandsreisen der Bibliotheksleitung (u.a. Niederlande, Belgien, Finnland, Singapur, Frankreich, Spanien).  Internationale Zusammenarbeit durch das grenzüberschreitende Literaturfestival „Literarischer Sommer“.  Einbindung eines Fördervereins. Intensive Lobbyarbeit auf kommunaler Ebene mit dem Erfolg einer Investition von 13 Millionen Euro für eine neue zentrale Mediothek

4.Facebook und Co. – die Mediothek Krefeld in den sozialen Netzwerken. Seit dem Jahr 2010 engagiert sich die Mediothek Krefeld stark in den sozialen Communities. Nach dem Facebook-Auftritt, welcher im Januar 2010 online ging, folgten sukzessive die Präsenzen auf dem Bilderdienst FlickR, auf Twitter, DEM Microblogging-Dienst, auf dem Videoportal youtube, auf Google Plus, dem sozialen Netzwerk des Suchmaschinenbetreibers Google und seit kurzem auch auf dem sozialen Bildernetzwerk Pinterest. Abgerundet wird das Angebot durch geobasierte Dienste wie Facebook-Places, foursquare und Gowalla. Ebenfalls im Haus befindet sich ein Geocache.  Allen diesen Auftritten ist die hohe kommunikative Komponente gemein. Gerade der Facebook-Auftritt hat sich innerhalb der vergangenen zwei Jahre zu einem wichtigen Kommunikations- und Marketingkanal entwickelt. Derzeit über 3.700 „Fans“ folgen uns regelmäßig und mit weit über 3 Millionen „Klicks“ im vergangenen Jahr liegt die Mediothek damit im deutschsprachigen Vergleich weit vorne und wird sehr gerne als kompetenter Ansprechpartner in Sachen Facebook und Social Media von anderen Bibliotheken, Facheinrichtungen und unserer Kundschaft in Anspruch genommen. Besonders wertvoll ist der durch diese Aktivitäten zu verzeichnende Imagegewinn weg vom verstaubten Büchereiimage hin zum modernen Dienstleistungsunternehmen.

Mediothek Krefeld Blick in das zentrale Atrium

Awards, case studies, further information
– Winner of a project competition of the Kulturstiftung Sparkasse Krefeld for an integrated concept to increase childrens reading skills (5 years, each year 50.000 Euros)
– Helmut Schroers, Katrin Hufschmidt: Eine Komposition in Weiß, Rot und Orange. In: BuB : Forum Bibliothek und Information 2009 Band  61 Heft 3 S.189-194
– Martin Kramer:I like – ein neues Image. Der Facebook-Auftritt der Mediothek Krefeld In: Bibliothek. Forschung und Praxis 2012 Band



Vennesla Library and Culture House, Norway

Name of the Library: The Vennesla Library and Culture House
Parent Organisation:The Vennesla municipality

Street Address: Venneslamoen 19, Vennesla
Postal Address: Box 70, 4702 Vennesla Norway
Telephone :
+47 38137300
Web Address:
Library Email:

Type of Library: Central Library, Joint use
Population served: 12.356
Project Type: New Building
Conversion Extension xNew Building Refurbishment
Size (square metres): 1.900 m2
Date of Completion 2011
Architect Helen and Hard

Vennesla library interior

The Vennesla Library and Culture House is a public library serving the inhabitants of Vennesla Municipality in Vest-Agder, Norway. The new library building completed in 2011 has won several architecture prizes and has been praised both within Norway[2] and abroad.[3]

The Municipality of Vennesla decided in 2005 to relocate the library to the city centre, linking together an existing community house and learning centre into a cultural centre. A café, open meeting places and a small scene were incorporated into the plan of the new building, making it a combined library and house of culture. With the new building, the municipality sought both to establish a public meeting place and to increase the quality of architecture in the urban area of Vennesla. An architectural design competition was initiated in 2008; it was won by the firm Helen & Hard from Stavanger, Norway and the new building was ready in 2011.

vennesla kulturhuset-banner

The main building material is wood, and the building is dominated by the 27 glue-laminated timber arcs that support the roof and give associations to ribs of a whale skeleton. The building has attracted much interest and won several prizes, among them Statens byggeskikkpris for 2012 (the Norwegian state prize for good buildings).[4] The building has, however, also received criticism for lacking functionality for its main purpose, namely being a library building. The author of an opinion piece in the Norwegian weekly Morgenbladet maintained that the library building was beautiful, yet inconvenient for normal library use.[5]

Photographs of the library are being spread around the world.
Huffington Post asked if this library is the most beautiful library in the world. ArchDaily writes that the library has a sophisticated elegance and Wallpaper describes the library as a library with strong identity.

In Norway there have been discussions about the library; “The winner of the Norwegian state prize for good building 2012 was the library in Vennesla. And it is a nice house. But is it a good library? All the shelfs, benches and the rest of the inventory is a part of the construction. A building where its usability seems to be of second importance and where its style hint more towards jewelry design than adapting to acquiring knowledge. Is it really aesthetics in itsself that is judged to be the greatest architecture of our time?”)

Awards, case studies, further information
Norwegian state prize for good building 2012

Bergen Public Library, Norway


Name of the Library Bergen Public Library
Parent Organisation: Bergen Municipality

Street Address: Strømgaten 6, Bergen Norway
Postal Address: Strømgaten 6, 5015 Bergen Norway
Telephone :+47 55 56 85 00
Web Address:
Library Email:

Type of Library: Central/ Main Library
Population served: 285 000
Project Type :Refurbishment
Size (square metres):  5193 m2
Date of Completion 1917, the new part of the building 2011.
Architect: Olaf Nordhagen


Bergen Public Library is the second largest public library in Norway.
The library has Scandinavia’s oldest public music collection (1924), and has its own special collection of material by composer Edvard Grieg. The collection digital-based and is part of Norway document heritage register ( a national edition of the UNESCO World Memory Programme).

Bergen Public Library is famous for digital special collections and literature projects as “Bergen reading”


The latest project will be carried is a special section for young people with interiors designed by students of the Bergen School of Architecture in dialogue with the city’s youth. The library will also employ young people aged 16-19 to be designing activities in these premises in this department.