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20.03.2020

The Public Library of Tromso

The Public Library of Tromso is a library for residents and guests of the municipality of Tromso. The main building was moved from its old premises in Storgatbakken to the Focus quarter and opened on August 3, 2005. There are collections on four floors.

The library also has two city branches in the districts of Kroken and Tromsdalen as well as district branches in Bensholmen, Sursnes and Laxelvbückt.
The building was built under the original roof of the old Focus Cinema, which was designed by architect Gunnar Böberg Haugen and opened on 16 March 1973. He designed a special roof structure based on the design of the Spanish architect Felix Candela, often called a candela shell. It is designed as four large arches that form a hyperbolic form of paraboloid.

Since the building was erected, the roof has been of very high quality, so when it was decided to build a new, self-supporting roof, it could be left in place.

Architectural firm HRTB AS was responsible for the design of the building and Skanska AS was the developer. It took 121.8 million to build the 3710 m² building. The parquet is made of birch from Tromsa. Today's building was put into operation in 2005.


Karl-Gustav Herzen of Narvik won the competition to decorate the library. His work "Rangifer Tarandus Pegasus" is made of welded and grey lacquered steel. In addition to the main character, the decoration consists of four smaller figures: "The Chainch of Books", "Reading a Horse", "The Bookworm" and "The Book Naf".
Ulf Dreyer : A painting by Tromsø in 1957/58, restored by the artist in 2005. The painting was originally painted right on a concrete wall in the old town hall. When the old town hall was demolished, the concrete wall was cut, preserved and inserted in the focus area, level 0 between the cinema and the library.


Hann Harbitz : Cora Sandel Memorial - "Alberta", statue in the woods. The memorial was previously on Stortorghet, outside the cultural centre. It was removed because the water pulled into the forest. It has now been restored and placed in the aisle between the library and City Hall.
Tor-Arne Moen presented the municipality of Tromsø with five plates of wood and five coloured engravings "On overgrown paths" with Knut Hamsun as a motif. The plates and engravings hang in the library.
Hans Ragnar Matisen created a portrait of Lars Berg, a woodcut. It's in the library's local history center.

The library has activities that appeal to all age groups and interests. The Library of Tromsø and the City Archives - from live adventures for the youngest to visits by authors, book presentations, reading circles, concerts, lectures and much more - is a living cultural institution in the centre of Tromsø.

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