In pictures: A sneak peek inside the Library of Birmingham


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The Independent Online

With its dramatic latticed exterior and 10 floors, it may look like something out of a science fiction novel but the new Library of Birmingham is very much of our time.

The futuristic building designed by architect Francine Hoube will be opening its doors to the public next week, becoming the biggest library in Europe.

The new building will be replacing the Birmingham Central Library and has taken three years to construct, costing around £189 million.

It will house one of the world's largest collections of the works of Shakespeare. There is also an amphitheatre, the garden terrace and the city's only tourist information centre.

The interlacing rings on the exterior of the library reflects the canals and tunnels of Birmingham. The Library of Birmingham is in Centernary Square and its modern look contrasts with the classically designed Baskeville House which neighbours it.

The building has been specially designed to reduce the impact on the environment and cut carbon emissions in the city.

The Library of Birmingham will be opening on 3 September

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