A look inside Helsinki's new library
In the heart of Helsinki, an old building got a new life when the University of Helsinki selected it as the site of Finland’s biggest scientific university library called Kaisa. The renovation replaced existing department store clothing ledges with more than 30 kilometers of book shelves.
In 2011, the new campus library received a Tellabs Foundation grant of $50,000 for its information technology system. This capability helps people access the library’s resources 24 hours per day. Both the foundation and library recognize how important these tools are to local education efforts.
At the new campus library, 250 librarians will serve about a million visitors and handle about 2.5 million book loans per year. It provides a modern workplace for more than 35,000 students, and 4,000 researchers and teachers. It also brings four faculty libraries under one roof.
The library is open to everyone, and its goals include providing:
- skillful partnership for research and learning
- research results and library know-how to the public
- inspiration to the community
Encouraging innovation through design
To represent Tellabs and the Tellabs Foundation, I was among the 850 guests invited to celebrate the opening of the new campus library of University of Helsinki in the beginning of September. Several community leaders attended the event, including the mayor of Helsinki, bishop of Helsinki, the university’s chancellor and the campus library’s main architect.
I was really impressed by the unique, although user-friendly architecture. Yet the renovated library building still fits with surrounding buildings in its central location downtown Helsinki. About 800 small windows enable natural light to enlighten the entire library with arch gables and a terrace with spectacular views of Helsinki.
As people use the library and its many resources, I expect many great results.