A new library in Philadelphia is every book lovers dream! The 220,000-square-foot library can house nearly two million books and is anticipated to attract over five million visitors a year!
The sprawling premises is designed by Snøhetta in collaboration with Stantec, Charles Library at Temple University. It is designed with expanses of glass that create maximum transparency at the three major entrances. Further, there is a three-storey domed atrium lobby that offers views to every corner of the building. Within the central atrium is a 24/7 zone and computing work spaces available to Philadelphia residents.
What does the library offer?
The library offers an interesting programme that is tailored to the emerging needs of contemporary students. It also offers focused research experience of traditional academic libraries. The fourth floor of the building encourages visitors to sift through the stacks of the library’s impressive collection. Nearly 200,000 volumes are present at the centre of the room with more private study spaces lining the perimeter.
It has one of the largest green roofs in Pennsylvania
The two reading rooms are expansive and offer views of a planted green roof. The roof was conceived as a meadow landscape with ornamental grassses and herbaceous perennials forming the foundation of the reading garden. The roof garden have over 15 species that provide a rich urban habitat for pollinators.The 47,300-square-foot green roof is one of the largest in Pennsylvania.
Charles Library’s book collection is stored in the high-density automated storage and retrieval system. It is termed the BookBot. It stands at 57 feet and spans three levels of the building. Presently, it stores 1.5 million volumes with a capacity of nearly two million. The BookBot drastically reduces space required for book storage and also expands access to the library’s collection. Additionally, it creates a space for collaborative learning, academic resources and individual study space.