The soon to be opened Minneapolis Central Library is already being heralded for both its architecture and the services it plans to offer patrons. Not only does the building have no internal loadbearing walls, and has a huge cantilever, the roof has grass planted on it as a way to handle runoff water (and in fact it recycles the water that does run off back onto the roof via pumps). The latest praise comes from The Christian Science Monitor. I quote part of that article here:
Patrons will check out their own books at electronic kiosks. Visitors will be able to download iTunes and eventually movies. Teens will have their own hip reading lounge where they can bring drinks and snacks and write poetry on the walls. And the librarians won’t be sitting behind desks, stamping book cards. They’ll be walking around among the stacks, talking on wireless devices dubbed “Star Trek” badges.
And about the building:
The new downtown central library is as provocative in design as some of the changes are among the stacks. No stuffy Greek columns here. Architect Cesar Pelli has created a post-modern building that uses blond wood and steel framing with geometry-defying angles. One plane juts out obliquely from the top of the building. Eventually a planned planetarium will rise from the roof that resembles the robot R2D2.
I am super excited to be able to get for a sneak preview of the new library next Tuesday when I will be at a presentation about Goggle Earth and (I assume) how it pertains to the library sciences and the Minneapolis Public Library system.