Sun, Apr 22, 2012 - Page 2 News List

Beitou library makes global top 25 list

By Mo Yan-chih  /  Staff reporter

The Taipei City Government is celebrating Beitou Public Library being listed as one of the 25 most beautiful public libraries in the world, sharing its pride in the international recognition of the “green” building.

The building was last week selected as one of the most beautiful libraries along with other public libraries in Japan, India, France, Denmark, the Netherlands, Norway, Thailand, the US and the UK by the US-based cultural news Web site Flavorwire.

The Web site stressed the cultural significance of public libraries for allowing anyone who wanted to gain knowledge and engage with history and literature, and said it praised the selected public libraries for offering a beautiful environment to their citizens.

Taipei City Libraries Director Hung Shih-chang (洪世昌) said the Beitou Library, the nation’s first certified example of “green” architecture built with recyclable materials, has been a top attraction in Beitou District (北投) since it was opened in 2006.

“The library is a popular tourist attraction in Beitou, and a lot of people visit the library to take photos and enjoy the general environment, besides reading,” he said.

According to Hung, the library houses over 63,000 books, including a large collection dedicated to ecological conservation. The library attracts an average of 60,000 visitors every year.

Located in Beitou Park, the three-story library is a wooden structure built to minimize its environmental impact.

Designer Chang Ching-hua (張清華), one of the designers of the library, said the open windows allow more natural light, and the rooftop is surfaced with solar panels to turn sunlight into electricity.

Hung said she was pleased that the library had been selected for the top 25 most beautiful public libraries, noting that Beitou Library is a only a small district library compared to many of the selected libraries on the list.

Taipei has opened a second green library in Youth Park in Wanhua District (萬華). The two-story library is also equipped with solar panels to save energy, Hung said.

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