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Sydney's Futuristic Two-Storey Darling Square Library Is Now Open

The flash new space comes complete with free wifi, retro gaming consoles, thousands of books and plenty of great places to eat.
By Leisha Kapor
October 29, 2019
By Leisha Kapor
October 29, 2019

After years of anticipation, from the first whispers to watching the plans unfold and the drip feed of food and drink openings in the precinct, Sydneysiders can finally start enjoying its fancy new public library inside Darling Square's Exchange Building, which opened its doors just this week.

Replacing the now-closed Haymarket Library (and four times its size), Darling Square Library has opened across two storeys of the slinky-like inner-city building, designed by Japanese architect Kenga Kumo and made using 20 kilometres of timber, offering plenty of new places to relax, study and work, with free wifi and public computers.

The schmick new library has more than 30,000 books that are free to borrow, and millions more digital items, including ebooks, movies, magazines, a large Asian literature collection, retro gaming consoles (including Nintendo, Atari and Sega), and robotic and electronic kits. There are also lounges and desks scattered inside and out, meeting and seminar rooms, a dedicated kids area, workshop spaces and an ideas lab where you can attend free workshops to help you use the 3D printers, laser and dye cutter, soldering irons and more.

Courtesy of City of Sydney

If it's been a while since you stepped foot inside a public library, all you need to know is that it's free to signup and borrow if you're a NSW resident — and you can wander the aisles and enjoy the space even if you're not a member.

You can check it all out straight away or head to the official opening on Saturday, November 9 — there'll be DJs, plus you can hear all about the workshops and events on offer, see the laser cutter in action, and enjoy some free coffee and gelato.

And, speaking of food, forget stale egg sandwiches and sub-par coffee from the uni cafe. When you're studying here, you'll be fuelling up for a study session at one of the many (many) new eateries now whipping out delicious food right there inside the Exchange Building, and throughout the Darling Square precinct, including a Japanese pasta spot, a milk bar from the Devon Cafe team and next-level toasties and cakes from the crew behind Enmore's Saga.

Find Darling Square Library at level 1–2, Darling Exchange Building, 1 Little Pier Street, Haymarket. It's open 10am–7pm, Monday to Friday, and 11am–4pm, Saturday and Sunday. To check out the opening library workshops, head to the City of Sydney website.

Image one: Parker Blain. Image two–four: Courtesy of City of Sydney.

Published on October 29, 2019 by Leisha Kapor


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