Saturday, January 09, 2016

Birmingham Library - RIP

Demolishing Birmingham Library

As you read this, Birmingham Central Library is being demolished.

Not the new(ish) one you understand. The one that looks horrible from the outside but truly magnificent once you go through the doors.

No, I refer to the old library that looks like an upturned concrete pyramid.

If you are a fan of big machinery they it's worth taking time to go and have a look. The nibbling device they are using to eat through the structure is amazing. For a start it's huge. That arm has to reach to the top of a tall building and it's all controlled by one man in the cab that can be tilted to improve his view.

Around the site are devices blowing water to reduce the dust given off. The is a site right in the middle of a city, presumably the reason explosives aren't being used.

Personally, while I can see the new library is easier to operate, I prefer the exterior design of the old one. Sadly, it is being demolished to make way for a series of uninspiring modern shops and offices.

Still, we can look back to the days when it was being built thanks to this excellent time lapse film:

Birmingham timelapse from 7inch cinema on Vimeo.

1 comment:

Huw Griffiths said...

I suspect that some people might have had similar things to say when a load of much older (and, to my mind at least, rather more attractive looking) buildings were razed in the 1970s to make way for the building that's currently being torn down.

Certainly I don't like the external appearance of the new building. However, I've never really much cared for any brutalist "architecture" - whether it's some John Madin "masterpiece" from the 1970s or something much more modern, designed by a current "celebrity" architect.

To me, it really doesn't matter who designs it - tearing down buildings to replace them with misshapen concrete monstrosities that look even worse has never been my idea of "Paradise".