When we were here last October for the interview that I had no idea would lead to us actually living here, I noticed an interesting building downtown. I only saw it from afar and never figured out what it was. Now I know that it's Birmingham's brand new as-yet-unopened Central Library.
There's more to the story than just a new library - the old building that's to be vacated is probably going to be demolished to make way for a collection of tall and uninteresting but lucrative office buildings. Kind of a downer, as the current central library building IS interesting and might not deserve the wrecking ball. It's from the ever-unpopular days of Brutalism, though, and that's all coming down nowadays.
The current library building is closing for good tomorrow, June 29, so we went down there last weekend to get a look inside before the end. Unfortunately, the vast majority of the library is already closed to the public, so there's almost nothing to see! The photo to the right is one of the only ones I took. The library was still impressively busy, actually, so I felt like a bit of an annoyance walking around trying to take pictures and limited myself to just a couple.
I do look forward to checking out the inside of the new library when it opens in September, but can't believe there's really no way the old one could be used for something else - it is a cool example of what it is. Unfortunately what it is is not a popular type of architecture right now.
Get down there today or tomorrow if you want to get in one last time!