May 22, 2019

'The Eye' of bookworms (Pics)

Traditional libraries are usually perceived as ancient, dusty haunts of nerds and bookworms. The contrast between this description and the Tianjin Binhai New Area Library in China couldn't be more stark.

Nicknamed 'The Eye', the library is part of the Binhai Cultural Center and has a total space of 33,700 square metres.

The floor-to-ceiling, all in stark white interior, are terraced bookshelves are designed to hold 1.2 million books. One moment though... some shelves are actually embossed aluminum plates that mimic actual tomes, which has prompted criticism in the past.

Regardless, the amazing creation designed by Dutch firm MVRDV and the Tianjin Urban Planning and Design Institute (TUPDI) is stunning and creation and a tourism hotspot. It has attracted more than 1.8 million visitors since it opened in October 2017.

The giant sphere at the centre can be seen from the park outside through an eye-shaped opening, giving it the appearance of an iris and thus earning the nickname 'The Eye'. The sphere also doubles up as an auditorium.

Going upto five levels, and beyond the main atrium area, the library has several sections including that for children, as well as special computer rooms, meeting rooms, and offices.

Instagram worthy much? Definitely!

(Pics : Shanika Jayasekara reporting from Beijing)

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