Designs for Iraq National Library replacement will be put out to tender in September, 10 years after original was lootedDesigns for a new Baghdad library boasting the largest single-space reading room in the world have taken a step closer to being realised after the architects got the green light to put the project out to tender in September.The Iraq National Library was devastated by fire and looting when allied troops entered the city in 2003. An estimated 60% of archival materials – including records of the Ba’athist regime – and 25% of books, newspapers, rare books, historical photographs and maps were destroyed. Construction of the new 45,000 sq m library building is expected to be completed within three years.Amir Mousawi, director of London-based AMBS Architects, said: “Iraq has a great heritage for libraries, but currently there is no outlet for knowledge there. There was an educated population, but everybody left during the Saddam [Hussein] years, so there is a vacuum of knowledge. The war or occupation, or whatever you want to call it, has done a lot of damage to the knowledge infrastructure, so it’s important to everyone that the library project materialises. Iraq desperately needs it.”The six-storey library will …read more

Via: The Guardian | Books