Warsaw University's Library and Rooftop Gardens

Warsaw Travel Blog

 › entry 17 of 88 › view all entries
Warsaw University Library

A good friend told me that I should definitely check out Warsaw Univeristy's library, so off we went, another walk around Warsaw and another chance to discover the amazing things Warsaw offers its inhabitants and visitors!  The University library used to be located on the main campus,  but since autumn of 1999, the Library occupies a state-of-the art building a few blocks from the main campus, in the Powisle district where it is supposed to be the cornerstone of the emerging new campus. Originally it was located in the main campus right off Krakowskie Przedmiescie which also is a place worth taking a look at.  I understand that the building where it was previously located now houses classrooms - I think for the school of Law.

Rooftop Gardens
 Construction of the new library was begun in 1995 and was financed by the Warsaw University Foundation. It is over 40,000 square meters large and can house over 4,000,000 items.  There is room for over 2,000,000 items on open stacks.

The building design is the work of Marek Budzyński & Zbigniew Badowski who entered an architectural contest to determine who would design the building 1993.  Their design was awarded the first prize and they were given the project. For the most part, the building is grey concrete and green aged copper - all other color is added by the books and the people who use and work at the facility.  The inclusion of nature - the entire library is covered by gardens - is fantastic.  (See my review about visiting the Gardens).

The Library's façade, has fragments of great writings in various alphabets and is really striking. Underneath the main inscription with the name of the library there are 8 big copper panels, 4 to 7 meters, showing the realm of knowledge, memory, and writing. There are excerpts from Polish Renaissance writer Jan Kochanowski, from Plato, from an old-Russian chronicle, from Arabic and Indian classics, from the Bible; there is a score by composer Karol Szymanowski (one of this Library's treasures) and sample mathematical formulas.

Join TravBuddy to leave comments, meet new friends and share travel tips!
Warsaw University Library
Warsaw University Library
Rooftop Gardens
Rooftop Gardens
I may be going a little overboard …
I may be going a little overboard…
Detail of 8 big copper panels on t…
Detail of 8 big copper panels on …
Detail of 8 big copper panels on t…
Detail of 8 big copper panels on …
Detail of 8 big copper panels on t…
Detail of 8 big copper panels on …
Detail of 8 big copper panels on t…
Detail of 8 big copper panels on …
Detail of 8 big copper panels on t…
Detail of 8 big copper panels on …
Detail of 8 big copper panels on t…
Detail of 8 big copper panels on …
Rooftop Garden
Rooftop Garden
Rooftop Garden
Rooftop Garden
Warsaw University Library
Warsaw University Library
Warsaw University Library
Warsaw University Library
Warsaw University Library
Warsaw University Library
Warsaw University Library
Warsaw University Library
Warsaw University Library
Warsaw University Library
Warsaw University Library
Warsaw University Library
Warsaw University Library
Warsaw University Library
Warsaw University Library
Warsaw University Library
Warsaw University Library
Warsaw University Library
Warsaw University Library
Warsaw University Library
Warsaw University Library
Warsaw University Library
Warsaw University Library
Warsaw University Library
The main entrance to the library i…
The main entrance to the library …
Warsaw
photo by: EmyG