Old barracks to open as ‘Istanbul’s largest library’

Old barracks to open as ‘Istanbul’s largest library’

Old barracks to open as ‘Istanbul’s largest library’

Rami Barracks is under restoration for use as Istanbul’s largest library, Culture and Tourism Minister Mehmet Nuri Ersoy has announced.

The building which will serve as both an art center, a public garden and “a library with features that can appeal to everyone” will be opened on Jan. 13, the minister said, speaking at the opening ceremony of another public library named after author Doğan Hızlan.

“We are happy to open our libraries one after the other in Istanbul this year,” Ersoy said, citing the library opened in early December in memory of the late writer Rıfat Ilgaz.

The library will have a seating capacity of more than 4,000 and a book capacity of 2.5 million.

Providing information about other library works in the country, Ersoy said the number of libraries serving under the ministry reached 1,257.

The ministry restructured 167 public libraries, while the improvement of 60 public libraries continues, he added.

“The total indoor area which was 323,316 square meters in 2018 in all libraries in our country has been increased to 399,732 square meters this year, and the seating capacity has been increased from 97,402 to 114,906.”

Rami Barracks were an Ottoman and later Turkish army barracks located in the Eyüp district in the European part of Istanbul. They were built in the 1770s in the Ottoman Empire era.

The Directorate of Surveying and Monuments of the city decided in 2010 to renovate the partly demolished and inauthentically modified building. A tender for this purpose was issued on Aug. 4, 2014.