Library spaces we love: Utrecht University Library & Westerville Public Library

Today’s post comes from the ILN’s Country Coordinator for Macedonia, Rozita Petrinska Labudovikj

 My favourite space in public libraries is the children’s space, and in academic libraries – the reading rooms.

Photo: 'Black, white and red' CC by Sean Vos

Photo: ‘Black, white and red’ CC by Sean Vos

Academic library

One of my favourite academic libraries is the Utrecht University Library in Utrecht, the Netherlands, mostly because of its design and richness of the library collections.  Every corner in the library is user-friendly, the colours are pleasant and the lighting is appropriate. This library offers many possibilities to the users. One of them is a personalized electronic library – depending on user’s discipline, this library contains a selection which can be further adapted with sources, books, articles and search results, resulting in a truly personal library. In the Personal Library users can receive news and recent purchases related to the discipline. I also love their special collections of manuscripts, maps and nautical charts.

Photo: 'Utrecht University Library' CC by Christopher Parkes

Photo: ‘Utrecht University Library’ CC by Christopher Parkes

There are possibilities for individual work or in work groups, spaces for relaxation, and similar. That makes the library a comfortable place to spend a lot of time during your studies. The Utrecht University Library in the Netherlands is very stylishly designed.

Public library

lOne of my favourite public libraries is the Westerville Public Library located in Westerville, Ohio, USA. It is a school district library, which means its geographic boundaries are the same as the Westerville School District. The library is small, but very cozy. The reason I like it so much is because it has a nice atmosphere, the staff is kind, and it offers beautiful space for children, which I believe is very important. If children like spending time in the library, they will continue to use it when they grow up.

Both of these libraries provide access to people with disabilities, are designed to be user friendly, and their spaces are pleasant and comfortable. I would ask the designer of the Utrecht University Library is it possible to create reading rooms like that using the space that we already have. And I would like to hear about the guidelines for creating reading rooms like the ones in this library.2013-03-06_-_police_car_54_-_picture_book_room_-_mickie_stiers_-_manipulatives_-_community_helpers_-_renovation_-_youth_services

Regarding the Westerville library, I would like to ask the designer is it possible to build an interesting space for children using safe, but less expensive materials for libraries in the developing countries, and I would like to know whether all the materials used in the children’s space are completely safe for the children.

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