Netherlands: winner of best new public library in the world

The winning library set out to be "the living room for the community".

The winner of the IFLA/Systematic Public Library of the Year 2018 is the School 7 Library in the Netherlands.

The prize is awarded to a newly built, or newly set up library with the winner selected by an international panel of experts. Over 35 libraries were considered and the shortlist included:

  • Villa-Lobos Park Library (Brazil)
  • Deichman Biblio Toyen (Norway)
  • Tampines Regional Library (Singapore)
  • Austin Central Library (USA)

The winning library is based in the Dutch city of Den Helder. The judges noted its "interaction with surroundings and the local culture".

Speaking on behalf of the winner, Jacinta Krimp said:

"When we started School 7 we wanted to be able to serve as ‘the living room for the community’ – and we’ve already succeeded in that. People come to the library to read, to work, to attend a lecture or to take part in a workshop. Young people study in our library, and new Dutch citizens practise the language. Enthusiastic volunteers teach children programming, children are often read to aloud, and writers tell about their books. People drink coffee in our coffee corner (the Leescafé), read the paper and meet for a chat. All these facilities are now located under the same roof."

Source: IFLA.
More information about the School 7 library via Systematic