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Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Bibliotheek Almere For an Unforgettable Retail Experience

Bibliotheek Almere For an Unforgettable Retail Experience
Imagine a Library with an unforgettable retail experience. More specifically Bibliotheek Almere in the Netherlands.

I first learned about Bibliotheek Almere in the August 2010 issue of DDI Magazine. Finally, I thought, a public space that not only recreates the Barnes & Noble vibe, but goes beyond it to create a shoppable public environment where I could see myself spending considerable time!

The DDI article, titled "A shoppable library. A retail approach puts the customer at the forefront of this Dutch public library", highlights the following:

Books are presented to customers with covers displayed rather than the traditional book spine in bookshelves format.

The library space is designed for lingering in and offers a "meandering landscape" where seating, lighting, information terminals and workspaces have been integrated into bookshelves.

Imagine five levels ranging from bookshelves, Internet areas, a read cafe, study areas and a multimedia area that is so dynamic that monitors project games as they happen and animate the building's exterior facade.

Books are arranged not by Dewey Decimal System, but rather by topics relevant to 'customers' and more similar to shops than to traditional libraries.

A curvilinear layout means an engaging adventure of discovery that draws visitors in.

Here are more details in Almere Library by Concrete Architectural Associates in the Contemporist - hat tip to the Indie Librarian.

I think I need a dose of Bibliotheek Almere. In fact, not only would public spaces benefit, but many retail spaces might, too.

I'm curious. How might you integrate some of these 'shoppable library' elements into your retail experience?


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