Marrickville Library could soon be named the best in the world

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In some exciting news, Marrickville Library has just been announced as a finalist in the International Public Library of the Year Award 2021.

The library is among five other finalists, including China’s New Ningbo Library, the new Deichman Bjørvika in Oslo Norway, the Forum Groningen in the Netherlands, and the Het Predikheren in Belgium.

Nearly all have cinemas, play and meeting areas and public spaces, but what does Marrickville have that they don’t?

The Marrickville Library. Photo: Kate Geraghty.

The Library has a special collection of Greek books, of course! It was also the first to establish a Hellenic Book Club in Australia, which aims to showcase and discuss books that promote Greek literature and history.

“It’s not just a library, it is the town square. It is the heart of Marrickville. It is such a lively place. There are so many young people coming in. It is not quiet or old or dead. It is lively and youthful,” Inner West Council Mayor, Darcy Byrne, told The Sydney Morning Herald.

Designed by architects BVN, the library has already won nine national architecture awards, three National Trust heritage awards and a NSW landscaping award.

Inner West Mayor, Darcy Byrne, at Marrickville Library. Photo: Kate Geraghty.

When announcing the shortlist, the judges admired the library’s beautiful adaptive re-use of the old Marrickville hospital. The floating canopy roof originates from the pitched roof of the existing building.

Since it opened in late 2019, visitor numbers have more than doubled. Last October, the 3600 square metre library had 53,000 visitors, including a record number of young people studying at university or the HSC.

There’s no doubt the local Greek community, which includes around 2,353 people according to the last census, are among these visitors as they sample the fantastic architecture and Greek books on offer.

READ MORE: Marrickville Road precinct set to formally become ‘Little Greece’ on July 17.

 

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