Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Cool Spaces: Seattle Public Library

Cool Spaces is a show on public television that spotlights "what's new and exciting in the world of architecture and design."  My mom was watching an episode when they began a segment on the Seattle Public Library.  Seattle!

After she called it my attention, I was able to record the episode and see just what went into the design, layout and use of materials for this magnificent structure.  I found it particularly interesting when they discussed the modern day challenges, with the surge of digital books, media and the internet, of deciding how a modern library should function. If this at all interests you, I highly recommend tracking down Episode 2 of Cool Spaces on public television.

In the episode, the library's key players explain how they decided how space should be used in a modern library. They divided the space into areas with specific functions and into areas where patrons can relax with their own gadgets or even snacks. Below, the host discusses the idea of modern libraries. 
I enjoyed riding the escalator and wandering throughout this large public space.  The light coming in through the diamond shaped windows was beautiful and interesting.
There is a large area called the "Mixing Bowl" where they expect patrons to gather and mix in a multipurpose space. I sat in one of the open use areas and read a few Seattle-based magazines and tried to experience the space. In total, I stayed about an hour and I will never forget it.
I'm including a link to a video (below) that plays on YouTube and is "available to the public." It seems a citizen video-taped his walk around inside the Seattle Public Library so that others could see what it was like. If you would like to see it, click below. If you want to move it along, slide the bar at the bottom occasionally to advance the video. It is about 5 minutes long.

The building is beautiful and functional. What have I been reading?  A great book, set in Seattle, called Where'd You Go, Bernadette? by Maria Semple. Check it out (wink).

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