Fairbanks Noel Wien Library
For a local public library in a relatively small community the Noel Wien Library is definitely one of the finest libraries in the nation I have ever seen. Before exploring the building's interior, books, services, and local historical archieves I though I would be nice to take a look at the Library's grounds and exterior.
Constructed on a fifteen acre parcel of land, today's Noel Wein Library finds itself in the heart of a park. Gracing the library's Northside is a six acre parcel of land maintained by Fairbanks Bontanical Society. During summers acres of wild flowers are planted while the rest of the Botanical park is stickly maintained with park benches, walking/ bike paths, and labeled samples of local plants and flowers.
To the east of the building is a large open feild approximately five acres containing a 6' birdbath as well as a walking/bicycle path that crosses a small picturesque bridge spanning a fifteen foot gully.
The path then connects to a main crosstown bike/walking path which is seperated from the library by a line of tree and dense shrubs. Having such a delightfully comtemplative setting around this library is just one more thing that makes this lending library such an exceptional place.
Built originally in 1977 the Noel Wien Library was a 45,000 square foot structure containing an arboritum, main reference library, lending library, children's library, and Historic Alaskana Library, as well as half a dozen small conference rooms, and a 200 seat auditorium.
Having frequently used this Library since the 1980's let me say that given the size of the community of Fairbanks this was one amazing library facility. Rivaling libraries in communities with a population base 10 to 30 fold of than of Fairbanks.
Not withstanding in 1997 the local citizenry overwhelmingly voted to expand the Library Facilty by an additional 20,000 square feet. In 1998 the new addition was seemlessly completed making the Noel Wien Library a whooping 65,000 square foot book Mecca.
Pictured below the children'slending library with it's large plate glass is just terrific providing plenty of room and untold of reading comfort. As in large city libraries the children's library offers a variety of services including Children's book readings, and a variety of craft and discovery programs.
While most of the space added dedicated to expanding the main reference and lending libraries addtional conference/ study rooms were also added. The next time you drop on by if you are working on a large report or perhaps a colaborative effort rooms are availible either by reserve or first come first serve.
Some other delightful additions to the library are stained glass windows from which you can uietly view the nature area's surrounding the library.
Ther is also this wonderful this fireplace room seen below, containing some fabulous examples of local native art.
As to the highly professional staff and personel working in this library, I hardly know where to begin. Let me state here that as a freelance writer for over twenty years, a full-time returning collage student, and a webmaster when, I need the facts I go to Noel Wien.
The Library has two highly knowledgeable full-time reference librarians, a research number that you can call and they wll find books, publications, maps or other extraneous data that you may need for that project, study, or to answer your human interest question. And best of all if they don't have it they can and will get whatever you need -- short of secret white house documents, from either one of the University of Alaska's libraries or from one of the large libraries in the lower 48.
For more information call:(907) 459-1020
Or dial them up on-line at the following link: