Obviously not located in the east of Minsk to just house the books, the National Library of Belarus is called "the diamond of knowledge". A 23-floor 74-meter tall building, it still isn't the tallest one in Minsk though one of the ugliest ones. It employs the personnel of a 1000+ and can store up to 14m books (out of which 10m are there).
On top of the building is an open-air observation pad offering superb views over the city (daily 1200-2230). Make sure you don't go there on a foggy day or the BYR 15 000 for the panoramic lift ride will be wasted. On floor 22 there is a closed observation pad with a cafe and a free toilet. The cafe serves wonderful coffees and ice-creams and is open until 2300.
The National Library of Belarus was founded in 1922. The current 72 m tall building was completed in summer 2006 and consists of 22 storeys. It was designed in the form of a rhombicuboctahedron (diamond) by the Belarusian architects Mihail Vinogradov and Viktor Kramarenko.
The National Library of Belarus is also home to the only public observation deck in Minsk. Unfortunately, when we visited the building on a late Saturday evening, it was closed.
At night the facade of the library can be illuminated by more than 4600 LEDs with dynamic light scenes.
A statue of the father of Belarusian publishing, Francysk Skaryna, can be found just next to the National Library of Belarus.
The National Library of Belarus is situated in a green park about 3 km north east of Minsk's city centre. The nearest metro stop is "Moskovskaya", from where it is still a 5-10 minutes walk to the east.
Address: National Library, Nezavisimosti pr. 116, Minsk
National Library of Belarus is probably the most famous modern building in whole Belarus. The shape of library is like a globe, standing on platform. The money for library was gathered from the income-tax of people. Some people think that it was better to use it for social status development.
We had the excursion inside the library. It has lots of art work on the walls, the museum of old books, platform, where you can see Minsk panorama.
Sculpture for Skorina is located near National Library of Belarus. It is quite new and big sculpture for the man, who was very important for Belarusian language, culture and the development of Lithuanian Grand Duchy some time ago.
Francisk Skorina (1490 - 1541) published first book in Belarusian language in Vilnius. He born in Pollock, studied in Krakow. In 1525 first his books appeared - "The Apostle" and "Small book about travels".
The newest and probably craziest building in Minsk is the Belarusian State Library, built in these last years of the new millenium. I cannot say if it's beautiful or ugly, surely it's something you notice and it has become a landmark. Far from the city centre, at the end of the almost neverending independence street, surrounded by a quite pretty district of "commie-blocks" all well restored and decorated, it surely is a stunning piece of modern architecture.
All the surroundings are very nice, with a lot of green and water. A nice park surrounds the library.
I couldn't go inside since there was some important conference and I was not invited, but surely it's worth a visit and I think you can also go up to the top (or at least high) to have a nice view of this suburb.
Lukashenka's crazy project in a country which is starving? Maybe, surely Minsk is not starving at all while the country can be really poor, but I cannot "condemn" this building, surely expensive, but made for culture.