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The 8 most beautiful new libraries in the world

The main branch of the Boston Public Library got a serious redesign over the last year.

The main branch of the Boston Public Library got a serious redesign over the last year.

Architects: William Rawn Associates

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What was once a "stone bunker," according to the AIA, is now a light-filled plaza that connects both wings of the library and adjoins a 340-seat auditorium.

What was once a "stone bunker," according to the AIA, is now a light-filled plaza that connects both wings of the library and adjoins a 340-seat auditorium.
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At the nearby East Boston Branch Library, light pours in through the high glass windows. Out front, stormwater can collect to nourish the newly-planted rain garden.

At the nearby East Boston Branch Library, light pours in through the high glass windows. Out front, stormwater can collect to nourish the newly-planted rain garden.

Architects: William Rawn Associates

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The column-free reading room features light wood construction and plenty of open space to roam through the aisles as staff enjoy long sightlines to stay on top of everything.

The column-free reading room features light wood construction and plenty of open space to roam through the aisles as staff enjoy long sightlines to stay on top of everything.
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The National Library of Latvia, at almost 600,000 square feet, is an imposing piece of architecture.

The National Library of Latvia, at almost 600,000 square feet, is an imposing piece of architecture.

Architects: Gunnar Birkerts

Associate Architects: Gelzis-Smits/Arhetips

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The atrium, with its soaring wall of books donated by Latvian residents, connects visitors to each floor via a single staircase.

The atrium, with its soaring wall of books donated by Latvian residents, connects visitors to each floor via a single staircase.
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The Columbus Metropolitan Library, located in Ohio, combines design forms with a metal-covered facade amid lush lawns.

The Columbus Metropolitan Library, located in Ohio, combines design forms with a metal-covered facade amid lush lawns.

Architects: JBAD

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In addition to letting light in through floor-to-ceiling windows, the building displays real-time energy use through LED screens scattered throughout.

In addition to letting light in through floor-to-ceiling windows, the building displays real-time energy use through LED screens scattered throughout.
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The branch of the New York Public Library in Stapleton, Staten Island was once a single-room facility.

The branch of the New York Public Library in Stapleton, Staten Island was once a single-room facility.

Architects: Andrew Berman

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Today, its original room serves as the children's library, while the extended portion contains open-plan reading spaces for kids, teens, and adults.

Today, its original room serves as the children's library, while the extended portion contains open-plan reading spaces for kids, teens, and adults.
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Renovations of Rosa F. Keller Library and Community Center in New Orleans were funded entirely through FEMA.

Renovations of Rosa F. Keller Library and Community Center in New Orleans were funded entirely through FEMA.

Architects: Eskew+Dumez+Ripple

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The funding helped restore the 6,300-square-foot facility to modernize its design and build a kitchen and cafe.

The funding helped restore the 6,300-square-foot facility to modernize its design and build a kitchen and cafe.
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At the University of Oregon, the Allan Price Science Commons & Research Library combines a brutalist exterior with softer features within.

At the University of Oregon, the Allan Price Science Commons & Research Library combines a brutalist exterior with softer features within.

Architects: Opsis

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The library's courtyard offers a forest-like feel, calming stressed-out students and mirroring Oregon's natural environment.

The library's courtyard offers a forest-like feel, calming stressed-out students and mirroring Oregon's natural environment.
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Virginia's tobacco barns inspired the design for the Varina Area Library, primarily in the creation of cascading roofs.

Virginia's tobacco barns inspired the design for the Varina Area Library, primarily in the creation of cascading roofs.

Architects: BCWH

Associate Architects: Tappe

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Meanwhile, the interior is pared-down and minimal. There are an equal mixture of wide-open spaces and quiet nooks for any of the 300,000 local cardholders to duck into.

Meanwhile, the interior is pared-down and minimal. There are an equal mixture of wide-open spaces and quiet nooks for any of the 300,000 local cardholders to duck into.
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