Blaagaarden Public Library – an urban garden of knowledge

Written by Library Planet editor Christian Lauersen, director of Libraries and Citizen Services in Roskilde Municipality, Denmark. For how to contribute to Library Planet look here:

On a nice run in Copenhagen I stopped to get a rest and realized I was stopped right next to Blågården Public Library. It was a while since I’ve been there so I decided to extend the running break and pay the library a visit – turned out as a very pleasant surprise;

The library, which is located in Norrebro in the middle of Copenhagen, has been undergoing a major refurbishment since my last visit. From a pretty common straight forward middle sized public library to an urban garden of knowledge, experiences and community relations.

Two main elements is running through the décor of the library; Green plants and wood. For a guy who is a regular wood-man and has a small allotment garden on the outskirts of the city this library setup served as a wonderful counter point to the regular public library décor.


Clearly there has been a lot of effort put into working with light, sound, colors and different kind of zones and spaces in the library. I love how the green plants is hanging from the ceiling and creates a blossoming vibe in the room, the light is soft but also bright, the colors chosen works perfect with the green, the light and all the wood. You know how you sometimes can enter a library with decades of different kinds of furniture in one big mix? All the furniture in the ground floor is made of the same wood and with the same design line and even though I like a bit of chaos it really calms down the sense of the room. Not to make it all to bland there are a couple of out-of-the-ordinary display furniture’s for promotion of different materials.



Going to the 1st floor you enter a different world. A huge children’s library creates an amazing universe with wodden houses and pirate ships and plenty of books. The décor around the wodden house and the pirate ship is really well done and filled with playing children. I like how the library has not only created a cool playground but really made space for tons of books and other materials on display in the area. It connects the playfulness with the content and just creates a nice atmosphere. A smaller area gives room for an young adults section with some cool comics, graphic novels and YA literature on display gently guarded by Batman.

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Is everything just peachy then? Well, almost, on this fine day a had a really hard time locating library staff in Blaagaarden Library and you know what they say; A library without staff is just a building with books (a damn fine building in this case). On this note it should be said that many libraries in Denmark operates with unstaffed opening hours so this might have been one of those.

When in Copenhagen please visit Blaagaarden Public Library and do also pay The Assistent Cemetery just around the corner some time – not matter the weather it’s my fave place in the city.

Library Love greetings



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