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New and Innovative Library: Helsinki Central Library Oodi

I was recently perusing social media and came across an article that spoke about a new library that was opening in the capital of Finland, Helsinki. What really grabbed my attention was that the Central Library Oodi project cost about 98 million euros to complete. I thought to myself, “Okay, I have to see what they are doing in this library!” I then began to read the article and I was not disappointed.

Oodi is broken down into three distinct floors each with their own intention. The third floor serves as the classic library. The library boasts 100,000 books in their collection and have reading areas called “oases”. The second floor is all about creativity. They have many rooms here that include art studios, media rooms, music rooms, makerspace areas, sewing machines, etc. The first floor is more of an interactive or public space and has a restaurant, a café, and even a theatre.

Oodi also has another room that I thought was neat. They label the room simply the “Cube”. It is a room with smart walls, which sound like they are very large touch screen displays that line the entire space, with the intention of creating a sort of virtual reality experience. The article notes that artists are already planning to use the Cube for ultra-immersive art exhibits.

The final interesting tidbit I would like to share is Oodi’s approach to book logistics. The article mentions that when patrons return their books, the system will scan it, and then a self-guided vehicle transports the book back to the library and onto the correct bookcase and then a librarian will properly reshelf. It sounds like a very cool idea but the article does not go into this aspect much.

If anything about the Oodi library interests you, you should check out some pictures as the architecture is also impressive.

You can find the article that I read here


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