Look Who’s 5: Happy Anniversary, Central Library

A story worth celebrating

On Saturday, December 14, 2019, we celebrated a very special anniversary.

Five years ago, on December 13, 2014, Halifax Central Library opened its doors, turning heads around the world as a unique, modern public space all can enjoy. In a short time, Central Library has become a model for how a community-designed library can transform a city.

“Halifax Central Library is evidence of the impact that excellent public infrastructure can have on a community. I hear every day from people who tell me that this Library has changed how they feel about the city we live in, and it has changed how we relate to one another,” says Åsa Kachan, Chief Librarian and CEO of Halifax Public Libraries. “Thousands of people gather here every day to experience connection, learning, and enjoyment. I believe the full extent of Halifax Central Library’s impact on Halifax is still unfolding.”

Halifax Central Library by the numbers

1,466,552 people walked through the doors in 2018-2019.

805,150 items checked out in the first full year of service.

82,937 hours of public computer usage by community members in 2017.

1,833 programs hosted in our first full year of service and 2,412 were hosted in 2018.

6,085 bookings of the Media Studio since opening.

36,073 volunteer hours given by community member since opening.

42,166 new Library cardholders registered since opening.

Party time

We were so pleased to welcome a big crowd for this milestone anniversary. On the rainy, dreary Saturday, the inside of Central Library was alight with music, conversation, laughter, and activity—as it always is.

Local MP, Andy Fillmore; Deputy Mayor and Halifax Public Libraries Board Member, Lisa Blackburn; and architects from FBM ARCHITECTURE ● INTERIOR DESIGNarchitects for Central Library joined us to ring in the special day. Community members took part in a scavenger hunt, sang along with The Big Sing Halifax, posed in front of our birthday green screen, made buttons, and shared feedback with the architects and Library staff on "what we got right" with the building, and what we can do even better in the years to come. Attendees received limited edition tote bags featuring Emma FitzGerald's iconic illustration of the Library (we will be ordering more, for sales, this year). Of course, there was cake, too!

Thanks to all who attended and shared their love with us (see the Post-It notes in the gallery below!). Here's to another, and another, and another, wonderful five years.