HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai has just opened the brand new Mohammed bin Rashid Library. Located in the Jaddaf area in Dubai, the library will officially open on June 16th 2022.
Having cost around $1billion to build and complete with seven floors of all the books you could possibly dream of, the building itself is shaped like a wooden bookstand, otherwise known as a “rahl.”
The library was created to encourage and nurture an interest and love for reading and learning across the emirate, whilst also providing a space for creativity, art, knowledge.
Following the library’s inauguration, Dubai’s ruler stated, “Today, we launch a cultural and intellectual edifice for our new generations, through which we aim to promote reading, spread knowledge, and support researchers and scientists. Our goal is to illuminate the human mind.” He continued, “The economy needs knowledge, politics needs wisdom, nations need to learn, and all of that can be found in books. Through this library, we have brought together millions of books to develop our path, consolidate our identity, culture, and roots, and create our future.”
The Mohammed Bin Rashid Library is the newest landmark in Dubai and is home to over 1.1million printed and digital books in Arabic and other foreign languages. Other texts include over 6 million dissertations, over 70,000 music scores, 75,000 videos, and more than 5,000 historical print and digital journals within an archive covering 325 years. There are also around 35,000 print and digital newspapers from across the globe, and nearly 500 are in fact rare collectibles.
Divided into nine zones, the 7 floor library has the following sections: The General Library, The Young Adults Library, The Special Collection Library, The Emirates Library, The Children’s Library, The Maps and Atlases Library, The Media and Arts Library, The Business Library, and The Periodical Library.
These various zones invite children, writers, researchers, thinkers, creatives, and more to access their endless library of books, digital media, information from all over the world and much more.
Taking libraries into the future, The Athenaeum is also a part of the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Global Initiatives (MBRGI) and has employed the use of the latest technology and artificial intelligence (AI) which includes automated storage and electronic book retrieval system, self-service kiosks, a book digitization laboratory, and smart robots to respond to visitors’ inquiries, along with augmented and virtual reality technologies.
Moreover, and in line with the UAE’s efforts to be green and sustainable, the library has been created to be as ecofriendly as possible. The exterior of the structure has been designed to insulate the interior. This helps to keep temperatures cool in the summer, and regulates the environment with the amount of natural light that enters the building from ceiling windows. Around 10% of the energy used by the structure is from solar panels that are installed on the roof of the building, which is also built to reduce water consumption by a whopping 50%. Water is also recycled from the air conditioners and is used to water the green spaces there.