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Spontaneous visits to Gothenburg public libraries

Public Libraries in the City of Gothenburg

The library network of Gothenburg consists of the centrally located Gothenburg City Library and 24 branch libraries for the different city districts, as well as two mobile libraries which drive to the city districts. These libraries have a common Web site – www.goteborg.se/bibliotek – and a common online library catalogue – www.goteborg.se/gotlib.

The public libraries strive to achieve “open access to knowledge promoting sustainable progress” through activities for children and young people, support for adult students, an extensive range of cultural programmes, and the provision of accessibility for disabled users.

Gothenburg City LibraryStadsbiblioteket i Göteborg / Gothenburg City Library
This is the most highly frequented cultural institution in the city, with more than a million visitors a year. Whatever your current situation, age or background, the library is an important, free meeting place that crosses boundaries. The wide range of the latest books, CDs, movies, newspapers, magazines, video games, talking books and audio books makes the library attractive to all kinds of people. The library arranges events for children and young people as well as exhibitions, lectures on various subjects, introductions to e-media and databases for all ages. Civic information and citizens’ influence is provided through the Parliamentary Corner and through Europe Direct – the Gothenburg Region. Special effort is put into the accessibility for disabled users.

Two mobile libraries bring a variety of media in many languages from Somali to Thai.
They have a fixed schedule and over 70 stops in the city districts – many in areas with a high proportion of immigrants. On weekends, the mobile library shows up at various events, advertising for all the public libraries. In the summer you can find mobile libraries at some of the popular beaches. Visitors can borrow books, music, movies, and video games and, of course, order materials over the internet. You are welcome to visit the two mobile libraries during the IFLA week. There will be an application list in the IFLA Night Spot where you can choose a time for a visit.
If you want to read the City Library's blog visit: www.stadsbiblioteket.nu

  • How to travel from the venue: within walking distance, 15 min
  • Address: Götaplatsen 3

Älvstrandens bibliotek / The Library of Älvstranden

This branch library is situated at Lindholmen on Hisingen Island, at the quayside of the Göta Älv, once the centre of the harbor and shipyards of Gothenburg. This area is now the most expanding in the city, with a mixture of education, trade, research, culture and residential areas. It is the school library for seven high schools and also open to everyone who works or lives in the neighborhood.

  • How to travel from the venue: bus or tram and boat Älvsnabben, 30 min
  • Address: Diagonalen 6

Angereds bibliotek / The Library of Angered
The library is situated in the centre of the district of Angered, the multicultural north eastern part of Gothenburg. Here you also find a secondary high school and a culture centre which houses a theatre, a civic office and a café. The visitors come from all over the world and a majority of them are students, mostly in adult education.:

  • How to travel from the venue: tram or bus, 1h
  • Address: Angereds Torg 13

Askims bibliotek / The Library of Askim
The Askim district, south of the city by the seaside, is an area with many bungalows and that has a high average income. The library has a large program of activities for children and more than half of all borrows are children's books. It has a developed volunteer activity where seniors go out and read stories to children in their kindergartens.

  • How to travel from the venue: tram or/and bus, 1 h
  • Address: Askims Torg 5

Backa bibliotek / Backa Library
This is a combined school and public library, located on Selma Lagerlöfs Torg, in the suburb Backa, on Hisingen Island. Approximately 25 % of the population has a mother tongue other than Swedish. It is the only branch library that has a self-service book return and sorting robot, “TOR“. The children’s section has a fairy-tale castle leading to a saga cave in the basement, where storytelling and book discussions are arranged.

  • How to travel from the venue: bus, 30 min
  • Address: Selma Lagerlöfs Torg 16

Bergsjöns bibliotek / The Library of Bergsjön
The branch library, situated in one of the most multicultural areas of Gothenburg, is  modern and stylish. Here is also a Citizens Advice Bureau where people can get information about their rights and obligations in the Swedish society. The library offers services as homework assistance, language cafés and courses in computing. There is a learning area that is part of the project One Step Further for adult learners.

  • How to travel from the venue: bus or tram, 1h
  • Address: Rymdtorget 8

Biskopsgårdens bibliotek / The Library of Biskopsgården
This intercultural library is located in the district of Biskopsgården on Hisingen Island, where half of the residents have an international background. Both the advisory board and the staff are multilingual and Arabic, Bosnian, Croatian, Serbian, English, Farsi, Finish, Somali, Sorani, Turkish and Swedish are spoken. Here are media in many languages, conversational groups in English, an adult learning environment in the project One Step Further, apopular art corner and a cafeteria. Local residents are contributing to the library development process, see: www.librariesforall.eu.

  • How to travel from the venue: tram, 40 min
  • Address: Vårväderstorget 11

Gamlestadens bibliotek / Gamlestaden Library
The small branch library, set in an expansive and growing part of the city, formerly the centre of the SKF factories, is a popular meeting point where people come to combine business with pleasure. Here culture evenings are arranged, offering musical experiences and exciting modern poetry. The library also offers courses in creative writing, courses for children, homework assistance and lectures on various topics.

  • How to travel from the venue: bus or tram, 20 min
  • Address: Brahegatan 11

Guldhedens bibliotek / The Library of Guldheden
Located in Southern Guldheden, south of the city centre, is this branch library from 1954. The district was planned and built as a model urban suburb in the 1950s. It was the first urban area with traffic separation in Sweden, well-equipped with shops, other services and a library. The library was renovated in 2007, when a new children's department was installed.

  • How to travel from the venue: tram, 20 min
  • Address: Doktor Fries Torg 6

Hammarkullens bibliotek / The Library of Hammarkullen
At Hammarkulletorget, in the northeastern district of Lärjedalen, you find this small branch library. It is run by an association with roots in the old labor movement, called the People’s Community Center. The library attracts many visitors from the multicultural environment, offering services adapted to the users, like a learning area for adult students in the project One Step Further and a nearby Citizens Advice Bureau.

  • How to travel from the venue: tram, 45 min
  • Address: Hammarkulletorget 62B

Hisingens bibliotek /The Library of Hisingen
The library is a resource centre for the region branch libraries on Hisingen Island. It is situated in an area with mixed house types and people from all over the world. Many inhabitants visit the library and the services are specialized to them and to adult students learning Swedish and basic primary school subjects in the project One Step Further.

  • How to travel from the venue: bus or tram, 30 min
  • Address: Wieselgrensgatan 11

Hjällbo bibliotek / Hjällbo Library
In this library, situated in the centre of the multicultural Lärjedalen district, people from all over the world find a safe welcoming place where they can get information about the Swedish society. They may practice their new language or read papers and books from the countries and cultures they have left behind. The library attracts lots of children, offering a variety of activities for them and their parents.

  • How to travel from the venue: tram, 40 min
  • Address: Hjällboplatsen 1

Härlanda-Örgryte bibliotek / The Library of Örgryte-Härlanda
Two local libraries merged into one in 2007, Härlanda-Örgryte bibliotek, now the third largest public library. It is situated in the new culture house Kåken, “the Nick”, which used to be the carpentry of an old prison. The library strives to maintain a broad programme of activities. “The Nick” also contains a café, areas for program activities, an open preschool and a health desk.

  • How to travel from the venue: bus or tram, 15 min
  • Address: Kålltorpsgatan 2

Högsbo bibliotek / The Högsbo Library
Axelhuset ,“the Axel House”,  is the cultural centre in the Högsbo district, southwest of the city centre. It aims to host broad cultural activities for everyone and the library focuses in particular at children and young people with storytelling groups and clubs for teenagers.

  • How to travel from the venue: bus or tram, 30 min
  • Address: Axel Dahlströms Torg 3

Kortedala bibiotek / Kortedala Library
In 1959, when the library was founded, it was the largest and most modern branch library in Sweden. Newly renovated and extended , it is a resource library, serving the north-eastern region libraries with media in more than 15 languages and special media for disabled people. The library has a learning area, part of the project One Step Further for adult learners, and offers a variety of language cafés, homework assistance and courses in computing.

  • How to travel from the venue: tram, 30 min
  • Address: Kortedala Torg 9

Kyrkbyns bibliotek / The Library of Kyrkbyn
This is one of the smallest public libraries and still very popular among its costumers and the population living nearby. Run by only 3 employees it has around 60.000 visitors per year. It's also the only public library with its own garden.

  • How to travel from the venue: tram and bus, 45 min
  • Address: Kyrkbytorget 4

Kärra bibliotek / Kärra library
Kärra-Rödbo is a growing district of Gothenburg, located in the northern part of Hisingen Island, with green areas and small family houses. Besides lending books, the library arranges toddler's rhyme times, storytelling for children, reading groups, a senior poetry group, author visits and exhibitions.

  • How to travel from the venue: bus, 30 min
  • Address: Kärra centrum 21

Linnéstadens bibliotek / The Library of Linnéstaden
The library, situated near the city centre, is a local meeting point as well a place where you can gather to share knowledge, culture and information. The main strive is to make the library easily accessible, up-to-date in contemporary issues, and being a source of inspiration for the users, who should also have a say in what media the library offers. 

  • How to travel from the venue: bus or tram, 15 min
  • Address: Tredje Långgatan 16

Majornas bibliotek / The Library of Majorna
The Majorna district, not far from the city centre, is close to the Göta River and harbor. Here you find many buildings typical for the early 20th century. The library is one of the oldest public libraries, now located in a building from1962. It cooperates with several local actors in environmental and health related issues, The Health Pilot project, and also provides citizen information and local cultural events in the Citizens’ Pilot.

  • How to travel from the venue: bus or tram, 20 min
  • Address: Chapmans Torg 5

Södra skärgården-Styrsö bibliotek/ The southern archipelago-Styrsö Library
Styrsö library is a combined school and public library. It is situated on the main island of the archipelago south of the city, that has about 1 500 inhabitants. Books and other media are sent regularly to four of the other islands, giving the inhabitants a possibility to borrow books without coming to the library. The ferries traficking the islands have book shelves containing children’s books free to borrow.

  • How to travel from the venue: bus or tram and ferry, 1h 30 min
  • Address: Brattenskogen 42, Styrsö

Torslanda bibliotek/Torslanda Library
This library is situated in the Torslanda district, which is very large geographically, heading towards the sea in the western part of Hisingen Island, but has a population of about 23 000. Many schoolchildren and teachers are patrons here, as well as families and retired people. The library offers a number of programs for parents and children such as story reading, theatres and courses in social media.

  • How to travel from the venue: tram and/or bus, 45 min
  • Address: Torslanda Torg 2

Tuve bibliotek / Tuve Library
Tuve Library is located in Kulturpunkten Tuve-Säve, “the Cultural Focal Point for Tuve-Säve”, which is a centre of culture and knowledge. The Tuve district, north of the city at Hisingen Island, has a multicultural population. Here are media in more than 30 languages and the library works in co-operation with the staff of the School of Culture and the pre-school. Together with the Red Cross Organization language cafés are run. Among the staff English, Finish and Spanish is talked.

  • How to travel from the venue: tram and/or bus, 45 min
  • Address: Tuve Torg 5

Västra Frölunda Bibliotek / Västra Frölunda Library
This is a recourse library in the district of Västra Frölunda, south of the city, also providing media to the libraries in the region. It is located in a building that houses other cultural offerings, Frölunda Kulturhus, “The Frölunda Cultural House”. You may attend a show at the theatre, go to the movies, listen to music, or take in one of the exhibits and there is also a public swimming pool. Lectures and courses are offered and there are various activities for children, youth, and adults eager to learn.
The School Library Centre, that provides services for the primary schools all over Gothenburg, is also located here.

  • How to travel from the venue: tram or bus, 45 min
  • Address: Valthornsgatan 3

The Röhsska Museum of Design and Decorative Arts
The Library and the Museum’s collection of bookbindings
The Röhsska Museum is the only museum in Sweden that covers fashion, art handicraft and design, and it is situated in the middle of Gothenburg city centre. The collections of the Röhsska Museum include a collection of bookbindings which consists of 1,200 volumes and exemplifies the historical development of bookbindings from the Middle Ages to the present day. The main components of the collection are books from the 16th, 17th and 18th century, as well as around 30 incunabula. Also included are medieval illuminated manuscripts and a letterpress collection of around 100 books from the 15th century and onwards which facilitates study of the development of typography with examples of different typefaces.
In the area of book art, different European countries are represented, with books from the leading bookbinders’ workshops in each country: Italy, with bindings signed by Aldus and Gjunta, and a few later volumes once owned by Queen Christina of Sweden, and France, with two Grolier bindings. Swedish bookbindings are well represented, with bibles and statute books bound by the leading master bookbinders of Stockholm. This is a significant collection which can also bear comparison with its international counterparts.

The exhibition Nordic Bookbindings, consisting of 81 exhibits assessed by a jury on the basis of craftsmanship, design and choice of material, will be held between 1st June and 15th August 2010.

  • How to travel from the venue: within walking distance.
  • Address: Vasagatan 15, Göteborg

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Last update: 10 June 2010