A couple of decades ago, a book lover could be identified by his head hanging over a book cradled in his hands. With technology, moving books has been made easier through the use of gadgets and the famous Kindle. However, nothing beats the feeling of a book in your hands, the turning of pages and the smell of old books. Just take a moment and remember that smell, what does it smell like? Shakespearian?
This library in China is the perfect place to remind yourself what it feels like to turn pages on a book rather than swiping on a tablet. Why should you visit the Tianjin Binhai Library?
Winy Maas, the co-founder of MVRDV, the company responsible for developing the library, said this of the library, “The Tianjin Binhai Library interior is almost cave-like, a continuous bookshelf.” This design allowed the maximum use of space, hence the continuous floor-to-ceiling bookshelves which have a capacity of 1.2 million books. Yes, you heard that right, 1.2 million books.
You can never run out of books to read in your entire life in this library. It doesn’t matter whether spend every second of your life living in this library reading. So reason one why you should visit this library: the infinite number of books of different genres.
The first reaction I had when I first saw the photos of this library was “Damn!” The Tianjin Binhai Library sits on 34,000 square meters of ground and as mentioned above, can hold up to 1.2 million books. It features floor-to-ceiling curved bookshelves that are painted to look like they are full of books. Between these shelves are scaffold stairs that lead all the way up top bookshelves which serve the purpose of storing books and provide sitting spaces.
The angles and curves which the library is designed to stimulate the different uses of the space including reading, walking, meeting and discussing. Together, these curves form the “eye” of the building, thus the overall design.
Whether you are thinking of visiting the place to study or to tour, the Tianjin Binhai is worth it.