Library in Tilburg named one of the best in the world

Library in Tilburg named one of the best in the world

The LocHal library in Tilburg has been named as one of the best new public libraries in the world for 2019 by the IFLA (International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions).

IFLA/Systematic Public Library of the Year award

The Public Library of the Year award is administered by the IFLA and considers applications from libraries all around the world. There are some conditions that need to be met though. The library needs to be newly built or housed in a building that was not previously used as a library. It must, therefore, have been completed between January 1, 2018, and December 31, 2018, to qualify for the 2019 award.

This year, 16 libraries applied for consideration. The prize goes to the one that best combines open, functional architecture with creative IT solutions. Of these 16 libraries, four were shortlisted by an international jury and LocHal in Tilburg was one of them! The other three were Green Square Library and Plaza in Australia, Oodi Helsinki Central Library in Finland, and Tūranga – Christchurch Central Library in New Zealand.

Libraries are assessed on six factors, namely: interactions with the surroundings and local culture, architectural quality, flexibility, sustainability, learning space, and digitisation.

Tilburg just misses out on the top spot

Whilst the LocHal is one of the four best new libraries in the world, it just missed out on the award, which went to Oodi Helsinki Central Library in Finland. The Tilburg library was praised for the space, which used to be an old railway workshop and has been transformed into, “a place that now serves as the living room of the city and as a locomotive in the urban transformation”, according to the jury.

Last year, the Dutch library School 7 in Den Helder won the world’s best new library award. School 7 was up against 34 other entrants.

The Netherlands is home to many beautiful old and new libraries, take a look at our favourites!

Thumb: LocHal

Mina Solanki


Mina Solanki

Completed her Master's degree at the University of Groningen and worked as a translator before joining IamExpat. She loves to read and has a particular interest in Greek mythology. In...

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