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Barcelona library named after Nobel Prize winner Garcia Marquez voted best in world

The Barcelona Library named after the famous Latin American Nobe-prize winner writer Gabriel Garcia Marquez has been declared the world's best library (Pic. Courtesy Twitter/@ToniAparicioG)

For books lovers, there is no other place on the earth like a library and one which provides ease and comfort while reading doubles their pleasure. That is what defines Gabriel Garcia Marquez library in Barcelona which has been declared as the best new public library in the world by the International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions.

Named after the famous Nobel-winning writer and novelist from Colombia, Gabriel Garcia Marquez, this library specialises in Latin American literature was declared the best at IFLAI’s congress at Rotterdam in the Netherlands, started last year in Sant Marti de Provencals, a working-class neighbourhood.

Barcelona Library2
Though the library has a capacity of 800 at times 1,300 people visit it (Pic. Courtesy Twitter/@QuayBooksStore)

The jury while declaring the prize commended the library for its architecture and innovative approach to encourage the people of the locality to use the resource. Besides this, they also praised the manner in which the staff interacted with the local community, the flexibility of the spaces and services, the commitment to learning and the sustainability of the building.

According to a report in theguardian.com, reacting to this news, Neus Castellano, the Director of the library said: “We’ve received the prize precisely because we opted for a model that makes the library an extension of the home, with armchairs and spaces that invite people to feel at home. This had led to small children and elderly people in particular spending hours in the library, and they don’t come just to take out books and they spend much longer here. The neighbourhood, which is densely populated and has a lot of students, really needed this library.”

Castellano added that the library never expected to win the prize. So popular is the place that though it has a capacity of 800, there are times when more than 1,300 people are present. Many as per Castellano also come for what he calls “library tourism” that is to check the place and click pictures.

Going forward, the institution will open a “room of the senses” designed for children with special needs and learning difficulties later this year.

Márquez was one of the many Latin American writers to have lived Barcelona and was in the city from 1967 to 1975. The library houses a collection of 40,000 documents relevant to Latin American literature and also runs a community radio station called Ràdio Maconda, in honour of the fictitious village of Macondo in García Márquez’s celebrated novel.