Cairns City Library, Queensland, Australia

Cairns City Library
Cairns City Library

Name of the Library: Cairns City Library
Parent Organisation: Cairns Regional Council
Street Address: 151 Abbott Street Cairns QLD 4870
Postal Address:PO Box 359 Cairns QLD 4870
Telephone :61 07 4044 3720
Web Address:
Library Email:

Type of Library : Central/ Main Library
Population served: 157,102
Project Type: Refurbishment
Size (square metres): 2010
Date of Completion: 1999
Architect: Power Graham & Dempsey Pty Ltd, Stephenson & Turner International

Cairns City Library2

The Cairns City Library and surrounding tropical gardens have been recognised for their historic importance by the Cairns Regional Council, the Australian Heritage Commission, and the Queensland Heritage Council.

The Cairns City Library building was originally built as a council chamber and officially opened on the 11 August 1930. This 1930s building was designed by Hill and Taylor architects, whose work blended elements of classic Greek and colonial Queensland architecture. Extensive alterations were made during the 1960s and again in the 1970s.

In the late 1990s the building was re-designed and modified by architects Power Graham & Dempsey, and Stephenson & Turner International, with every effort made to retain the ambience of the 1930s chamber. It reopened as the new City Library in 1999.
The historic central chamber with its distinctive cedar timber panelling has been retained as the Information and Reference Room. The original high plaster ceilings, paired cedar doors and lead-light windows have been restored. Also of historic and architectural interest are the original strong room door, the Lake Street portico, and the Ionic columns.

Cairns City Library1

The large Moreton Bay fig trees, planted in 1907, remain as a feature of the gardens which were redesigned in 1999 by landscape architects Siteplan Cairns. Another special feature of the gardens is the Literary Trail, a display of public artworks completed in 1999 by local artists, inspired by the literary works of authors who have resided in the Cairns Region.

As part of the Cairns Libraries network, the Cairns City Library’s many programs and services include:

  •  Extensive children’s activities such as Baby Rhyme Time, storytime, and school holiday activities
  •  LearnIT @ your library information technology classes
  •  Literary events and workshops
  •  City heritage walks
  •  Family history workshops and drop-in sessions
  •  Professional reference and information services
  •  An extensive regional resource collection and family history collection
  •  Display areas including a permanent Cairns Regional Council Sister Cities display
  •  Free Wi-Fi
  •  Meeting Rooms for hire

Inclusion on the Queensland Heritage Register in 1998


Hakunila Library, Vantaa, Finland

3Children section_Teppo Lahti

Name of the Library: Hakunila Library
Parent Organisation: Vantaa City Library
Street Address: Kimokuja 5
Postal Address:  FI-01200 VANTAA FINLAND
Telephone :358983930805
Web Address:
Library Email:

Type of Library :Medium size town library
Population served: ca. 29 000
Project Type: Refurbishment
Size (square metres): ca. 600
Date of Completion: 30.8.2013
Architect: Interior Designer Minna Haapakoski
1Book displays before and after_Marko Nissinen

Hakunila Library was refurbished in 9 months during 2012-2013.

The opening day was Aug. 30th, 2013. Library patrons were included in this project. At first they were given an opportunity to evaluate the library through a customer survey. Based on their answers, we created three workshops to get a better insight into what is important for a modern library patron as regards space and collections. Interior designer Ms. Minna Haapakoski, who is specialized in re-using materials in interior designs, made a plan using the knowledge we gathered from the workshops. Also, the collection was evaluated and re-arranged in theme areas to make it easier for patrons to find what they need.

Most of the old bookshelves were re-used. They were painted, lowered and now there are wheels under them. Now it is also easier to modify the space if needed for performances, etc. The space is now more colorful and open.

The refurbishment was made with help and cooperation with local enterprises. For example, a local paint factory donated us the needed amount of paint for the furniture.

Besides basic library functions, our patrons want us to be a local cultural center. When possible, we organize musical performances and literature events. For example, in spring 2014 there was a library dance event. We pushed shelves aside and people were invited to dance to old Finnish dance music. We have two reading groups, one of them has been active for seven years and the other one, concentrating on thrillers and detective stories, started at the beginning of 2015. People can also watch movies on our premises and there is a space for art exhibitions.

For children we have clubs in cooperation with local organizations and we have volunteers who come twice a week just to keep the children company, when needed.
Awards, case studies, further information
We attended a satellite conference and the IFLA conference in Singapore in 2013 with two presentations.

Click to access 086-ervasti-en.pdf



Seoul National University Library, Kwanjeong, South Korea




Reading Room
Reading Room

Name of the Library: Seoul National University Library Kwanjeong
Parent Organisation: Seoul National University
Street Address: Gwanak-ro 1  Gwanak-gu  Seoul, Korea
Postal Address: 151-749
Telephone : 82-2-880-1160
Web Address:
Library Email:

Type of Library : University Library
Population served: 29,426 students and 2,076 faculties(as of March 2015)
Project Type:  New Building
Size (square metres): 27,243㎡
Date of Completion: 5 Feb 2015
Architect: Tae Yong, Yoo (Teh Je Architects, Inc.)

Exterior View
Exterior View

Seoul National University Library : Main building and Kwanjeong
Seoul National University Library holds the largest collection of books among university libraries in Korea. Located at the center of Seoul National University campus, the Library is consisted of two buildings: the main building and a newly-built library, Kwanjeong. The main building provides resource-oriented service, while Kwanjeong houses high-tech, user-friendly facilities. The two buildings together create the optimal environment for the Library users.

Features of Library Kwanjeong

Space Without Pillars
For the first time in Korea, a steel truss lifting & sliding technique was used to build Kwanjeong, allowing the space to be created without pillars (from 6F-8F, 112.5M×30M). The Reading Rooms take full advantage of the open space structure.

Outer Wall : Representing Generations of Light and Colour (see phoo above description)
Outer walls of Kwanjeong represent the present and future of Seoul National University. Simple triangular patterns and lines that are repeated and overlapped on the walls’ surfaces portray the rich imagery of continuously changing light and color through the passage of time.

Nature-friendly Rooftop Garden
Located on the top of the six story main building, the Rooftop Garden overlooks a fantastic view. Amounting up to 7,273 square meters, the Rooftop Garden is fully utilized to serve as a resting place. The Garden is a nature-friendly place reserved for SNU students and faculty.


Cohabitation of ‘Old’ and ‘New’
Mainly, the intersection allows for the movement between two buildings. This intersection, however, bears extra significance as it is where the old and the new of the SNU Library cohabitate. The design of the intersection connects the main building’s outer walls directly with the interior of Kwanjeong. It also allows easier management and access between the two buildings.

Multimedia Plaza
DVDs are available for viewing in the Multimedia Plaza. The Multimedia Plaza is home to 17,864 DVDs, including the most popular DVDs among Seoul National University students, 3D and blue-ray movies. It has a seating capacity of 92 people, with chairs ranging from single seat to four seats.

Friends of the SNU Library
‘Friends of the SNU Library’ is a fund-raising campaign launched in March 2012 to secure funds for the construction of the Kwanjeong. A total of 840 SNU alums, faculties and staff, students, and the public have participated in raising 70.7 billion won. The interior space and the furniture of the Group Study Room, Carrels, Reading Room chairs and desks have been purchased with the generous donation to the ‘Friends of the SNU Library’, and we sign the names of the donors on the plaque for the donated space and furniture.

Biblioteca/CRAI de la Ciutadella – Edifici del Dipòsit de les Aigües, Barcelona, Spain


Name of the Library: Biblioteca/CRAI de la Ciutadella – Edifici del Dipòsit de les Aigües
Parent Organisation: Universitat Pompeu Fabra

Street Address: Ramon Trias Fargas 25-27
Postal Address:00005 Barcelona
Telephone : + 34 93 542 1709
Web Address:
Library Email:

Type of Library: Central/ Main Library
Population served: Universitat Pompeu Fabra community
Project Type: Conversion , Refurbishment
Size (square metres):14.850 m2
Date of Completion: 2003
– Josep Fontseré (1874, original building)
– Lluís Clotet and Ignacio Paricio (1992,  conversion project)

The Dipòsit de les Aigües is a building designed in the late nineteenth century to contain 10,000 tons of water on the top and outside, at a height of 14 meters above the ground. It was used to irrigate and supply water to the cascade of the adjacent Ciutadella Park. The interior of the building, elaborated as a large forest of columns and arches, had no specific purpose when it was designed.
The conversion as a Library space was based on these principles:
• maintain the appearance and structure of the original building, gaining surface with the creation of a mezzanine floor
• increase exterior lighting by opening skylights in the ceiling
• combine the modern equipment and facilities result of the conversion with the original quality of the building.
This combination of features makes the Dipòsit de les Aigües an ideal space for concentration and individual work for our users.


Awards, case studies, further information
2009 Década Price (Oscar Tusquets Foundation) for the best architectural works built in Barcelona 10 years after its Implementation
Magre, Anna. From a Reservoir Building to the Main Library of the Universitat Pompeu Fabra.  Liber Quarterly, vol 10 (2000), No 2, p. 266-278
Building history