Seattle Public Library, Travel Thursday

The Seattle Public Library is a quite a dominating building, which is impressive given that it is surrounded by several skyscrapers. Although it is only 11 stories, compared to the seventy or more around it, it’s a very cool and modern building that is worth a visit if you are in Seattle! It’s free to enter, it’s close to the wharf and downtown shopping, and it’s accessible by public transportation. Time to head to the library!

Seattle Public Library,Travel Thursday

We walked all through downtown to get to the Mariners game.  While a lot of downtown Seattle is office buildings, the library is a bit of an oasis. Even though we were there at 430 on a Saturday afternoon in the summer, it was quite busy. This is a newer building, completed in 2004! While I normally go for older buildings or at least older architectural styles (as an historian…), I think that the modern style works well here. Libraries are working hard to adapt to ever-evolving technology and this style suits it well!


The building is rather hulking from the outside and you wouldn’t necessarily be certain as to what it is. However, once you are inside it’s a pretty bright and striking place. I would describe it as simple but detailed (if that’s not confusing…)!


The lattice work on the windows is a strong effect, and it’s not one I’ve seen inside many buildings in my travels.


These green escalators are the second set, and they really do pop. The installation in those windows shows clips of people- mostly close ups on eyes, noses, and mouths from what I could see, but I also didn’t walk backwards to keep viewing it in the hopes of seeing more… While I might not have any specific connection with this piece, I love the idea of including more art in libraries! (Does your library have any sort of art installed?)

green escalator

I am a fairly small and petite person, and this escalator was barely wide enough for me! Who was this made for, ants?! (But seriously, I found it very entertaining.)

tiny escalator

We continued on our journey upwards. I must say, I would not turn up my nose at working in this library!

ceiling (1)

Annnnnnnd finally: the view from the top! Seattle has quite the mix of architecture downtown, and the top of the library is a good place to see it all! Apparently you can actually get to a viewing platform outside on the 11th floor, but we decided to skip it and head back on our way to the game!

view from the top

What is the most interesting library you have visited? 

Until tomorrow,
The Historian!

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5 thoughts on “Seattle Public Library, Travel Thursday

  1. Halee Pagel June 22, 2017 / 2:43 am

    The most interesting library I visited was the Stockholm Public Library. The central room is perfectly round and filled with two floors of books!


    • anhistorianabouttown June 22, 2017 / 8:07 am

      I just googled it- HOLY BATMAN. That is CERTAINLY going on my “to do” list!! I could probably wander that circle for HOURS

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Meryn June 23, 2017 / 3:41 am

    The latticework looks similar to the Birmingham Public Library in England. Also gorgeous on the inside. There are ladders (which I always love) in select areas.


  3. Susie June 23, 2017 / 10:22 am

    Oh my goodness, the SPL! I love your pics. This building definitely tops my “interesting library” list!


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