The National Library
One of the most recognizable sightseeings of Minsk is the building of the National Library of Belarus. Above Independence Avenue, on the banks of the river Slepyanka the Belarusian diamond towers. The building has a striking design in the form of a rhombicuboctahedron, a polyhedron of 18 squares and 8 triangles. The building’s project was created back in the late 80s by architects V. Kramarenko and M. Vinogradov and then became the winner of the all-union competition. The image of a faceted diamond, according to their idea, is supposed to symbolize the amazing beauty, complexity and versatility of the world knowable with the help of science, as well as the value of our knowledge about it. However, these bold ideas were hindered by the turmoil of the nineties.
In 2002, they returned to the project, and on June 16, 2006, a grand opening of the National Library’s buildings took place. The library itself is much older: its foundation is linked with the university library of BSU, opened in 1922. Four years later, in 1926, the library stood out from the structure of the university, becoming an independent institution. The opening of the new building was dedicated to the 90th anniversary of this particular event. Until then the library was located in the building of the current Council of the Republic which is also one of the best jewelry in the collection of Belarusian architecture.
The library has over 9 million books, among which there are about 70 thousand unique manuscripts and early printed editions. Up-to-date information and engineering technologies provide visitors with convenient search and give the opportunity to easily work with media, as well as offer the fastest delivery of books from the store in the world. It takes just 20 minutes after you order the book.
The library is the center of not only scientific, but also socio-political life. The building hosts CIS summits, international forums, press conferences. All kinds of art exhibitions of a high level are held there. For visitors the library offers guided tours, including visits to the observation deck, literary evenings, book exhibitions, a cafe, a children's playroom and even sports and recreations complex.
How to get there: ‘Vostok’ metro station; trams 3, 4, 10 (stop ‘Ploshchad Pobedy’); tram 5 (to the stop ‘Ploschad Yakuba Kolasa’, then take the metro to Vostok station); Buses 27, 80, 91, 95, 165, 942 (stop ‘Natscionalnaya Biblioteka’)