Monday, August 27, 2012

110. Great River Library System, Elk River

Signs abound:

On the entrance door, "Sorry we missed you--visit our website at..."

Near the request shelves, "Please allow staff 2 hours to process delivery after notification of hold." I meant to ask about this one, but forget. I'm guessing that AMH checks the book in and sends the notice, but then the books must still be shelved with the requests.

In the children's area: ""Library Manners: Use your inside voice. Walk don't run. Be respectful of people around you. Take care of library materials. Ask a librarian if you need help." I like the last one especially.

The children's area is extraordinary, and I learned that the architect was inspired by the books of Eric Carle. There are a couple of tall "tree trunks" with large, round, flat green disks of "foliage" high above. Metal "insects" with tiny lights hang from the ceiling. One large table is oval and colored like a ladybug, with chairs to match. And one table with four bright cushioned seats (I simply can't describe it adequately) evokes the Very Hungry Caterpillar. The floor covering forms a wide, blue, curving path through the kids' area, with green "river banks." Anyone considering a new or renovated kids' area, you really should come look at this one.

In the adult area, there are adult rules for behavior that I didn't copy. The current issue of each periodical had a conspicuous notice that it is for in-library use only (that's standard) and a reminder that "Theft or defacing...is a violation of state law." The only other place I remember seeing this sort of notice was Northeast, in Minneapolis.

There are two "living room" areas for browsing, one with a fireplace. Most of the building has large, clear windows; in the teen area, there are several windows of different shapes and different patterns and colors of glass. It set the space off nicely.

There were computers in the adult and teen areas, a long counter for laptop use, and three study rooms that can be reserved by computer. There's also a very large wall clock, and I should have asked whether there is a story there. Perhaps someone will comment and tell us.

There's a good-sized meeting room off the lobby, as well as soda and snack machines.

8/27/12, car




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