More and Bigger libraries?

The Museum Libraries Archives Council released a report June 2008 stating how much library space they’d calculated areas needed per thousand population. I came across this report and have calculated their recommendations on Southwark. It is quite a shock.

They recommend 25 to 35m2 per thousandpeople. Assuming an average of 30m2 then Southwark even with the new Canada Water library has4,914m2 public space in libraries suitable for a population of only 201,713. But Southwark’s population is reported to be around 315,000.

So we need more library space. Roughly 3,400m2. But clearly this doesn’t reflect library opening hours and where the space should be and what population growth will do to our population of residents. We also need to reflect on the impact of people working and studying but no living in Southwark. Library service dimensioning.

I’ll be doing this maths over the next few weeks – but as a minimum we need the space of an extra two Canada Water libraries spread across Southwark.

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