Vancouver Public Library

The Central Branch of the Vancouver Public Library is a significant architectural landmark resembling the Roman Colliseum

Vancouver Public Library collonaded wall
Vancouver Public Library collonaded wall cc licensed photo by Alex Ramon

The main reason for tourists to visit this must-see Vancouver landmark is to take in its remarkable architectural design. The design by Moshe Safdie was the people's favourite from a design competition and it is truly inspirational, both inside and out. Construction was completed in 1995.

The exterior design of this nine story library complex resembles the present state of the Roman Colosseum.

The library complex occupies a full city block and is surrounded with an elliptical, colonnaded wall that contains reading and study areas linked by bridges to the main portion.

Levels 8 and 9 will be of particular interest to visitors. On level 9 you can relax in the new roof-top garden and take in the view of the surrounding city. This new garden was opened in September 2018, 23 years after the Library first opened in this location. Two more outdoor terraces are located on level 8.

Level 8 also includes an exhibition space, a small theatre, a quiet reading room and a lounge area where you can bring your own food or purchase snacks from one of the vending machines.

For complete details about the Vancouver Public Library see the official site link below.

Facts For Your Visit

Official Website: Vancouver Public Library

Fee: No

Regular Hours:
May differ on holidays

  • Monday: 9:30 AM – 8:30 PM
  • Tuesday: 9:30 AM – 8:30 PM
  • Wednesday: 9:30 AM – 8:30 PM
  • Thursday: 9:30 AM – 8:30 PM
  • Friday: 9:30 AM – 6:00 PM
  • Saturday: 10:00 AM – 6:00 PM
  • Sunday: 11:00 AM – 6:00 PM

Address: 350 W Georgia St, Vancouver, BC V6B 6B1, Canada

Phone: (604) 331-3603

Official Website: Vancouver Public Library

Reviews

Rated 4.7 out of 5Vancouver Public Library, Central Library Star Rating

3 Star Rating architecture wise it’s kinda depressing.. with industrial vibes and very conventional layout. maybe the overcast weather was an influencing factor. but if aesthetics is what you’re looking for, don’t have your hopes up. but functionality wise, it seems that visitors / residents here are enjoying it. there is a good variety of services available and you can tell that the institution makes an effort. the root top is good for some fresh air, but again i wouldn’t say the view is mind blowing.

M - 22 days ago

4 Star Rating lovely experience. read the current day’s wall st journal and this week’s economist on the 7th floor. very busy but plenty of space for everyone. staff exceptionally helpful. architecture is great; the atrium/natural light seating w close by the open air stone wall is a very nice addition. vendors within the entrance area. great for residents and visitors alike.

NoahJon Marshall - 5 months ago

5 Star Rating Excellent library, great design, amazing atrium for events, nice bookstore, plenty to explore; social services and workforce information, special collections, books, magazines, and videos. Great study and reading spaces, the top floor has an amazing view of the city. Outdoor roof green space is an ideal park for visitors, views of the city, or to relax and read free books. Check out the new innovation center with digital media software and recording studio’s.

Cyril Oberlander - 3 months ago

5 Star Rating Super cool architectural public library with a beautiful roof terrace / garden that’s free to access & enjoy. It offers beautiful views over the city from the rooftop and access from the ground level is by lift, or by taking the escalators all the way up. There’s also free public Wi-Fi too. It’s a great place to sit and enjoy a coffee or sandwich from a nearby cafe.

Gustav - 2 months ago

5 Star Rating An enormous library, the perfect place for reading, working on your laptop or simply hanging out. Besides you can find a lot of content for any topic and interest. I have been there sometimes, and I can say that I love to be in this place.

Andres Gutiérrez - 1 month ago

Accommodations near Vancouver Public Library:

Directions

SkyTrain Line Nearest Station Walking Time
Expo LineStadium-Chinatown Station7 Minutes
Canada LineVancouver City Centre Station7 Minutes

How to get to Vancouver Public Library by SkyTrain

No bus needed - just a 7 minute walk from either SkyTrain Station. From Stadium-Chinatown SkyTrain Station on the Expo Line exit onto Beatty and Dunsmuir Street and walk to your right (west) along Dunsmuir for 2 blocks to Hamilton Street. Go left on Hamilton for one block and you will be at the east corner of Library Square.

From Vancouver City Centre Station on the Canada Line exit onto Georgia Street and walk to your right (southeast) along Georgia for 3 blocks to Homer Street and you will be at the north corner of Library Square.

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Photo Gallery

Video


A great video showing off the remarkable design on the Vancouver Public Library
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