Wandering through the shelves today and noticed a woman had curled herself up in one of the library’s armchairs. She looked quite comfy and obviously felt that way too, as she had also removed her shoes.
Although our spaces are primarily set up to support our lending, we also provide a lot of seating for those who want to read in the library. This can be the daily newspaper, latest mags or whatever book takes their fancy. And of course, a comfy chair and a warm space are an invitation to have a snooze.
We also have study tables, both large and small and lots of power points to meet the demands of our WiFi users. Besides the high school students who come in to work as groups, we get regular university students who come in to do solo study. We are also seeing the library as more and more of a meeting place, as a neutral place where people meet in the area for a common purpose.
Then of course the gamers rearrange the furniture so they are most comfortable using our games consoles.
So our furniture arrangement and to an extent our spaces are ever in flux. We have planned our spaces for the readers and have adjusted the spaces for the WiFi users, but our community comes up with more and more ways to use the space. And although it has taken me a bit, I am finally OK with that. After all I am a librarian and I do like order, but a bit of chaos for the good of the community is something I think I can manage. And even if I can’t, that’s my problem because they will do it anyway, lol.
How is your library space being used in a way you didn’t plan or anticipate?