A Library Designed for the Post-Print Era

From Fast Company Design:

The defining decorative element of a library has always been the books themselves. But now that institutions ranging from the University of Texas at Austin to ultra-traditional Cushing Academy are tossing their stacks in favor of digital collections, the question arises: How do you design a library when print books are no longer its core business?

At the University of Amsterdam, Dutch designers Studio Roelof Mulder and Bureau Ira Koers converted an existing 27,000-square-foot library into a massive study hall -- without any visible books -- to accommodate the 1,500 to 2,000 students who visit daily.

It’s a clever way to adapt to the post-print era. Libraries are expensive to operate. As books increasingly go digital, it makes sense for libraries to either downsize or, in the case of the University of Amsterdam, shift the focus of operations from books to people.

Check out the link for photos.


the story says "100 plastic red crates, where students can pick up books they requested online," but the picture shows what looks like more than 1,000 crates... and they are numbered... does someone put the book in the crate behind the wall and the student takes the numbered crate? do I have to put them back in number order? how do you find your books if they're out of order? does this room have any usefullness at all?
and I'm supposed do my work on a tree stump? while lying on a fiberglass lime? I can't even imagine what I might find in the toilets.

Add new comment

Plain text

  • Allowed HTML tags: <a> <em> <strong> <cite> <blockquote> <code> <ul> <ol> <li> <dl> <dt> <dd>
  • No HTML tags allowed.
  • Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.