Fábrica das Palavras, Biblioteca Municipal de Vila Franca de Xira

  • March 2017

The name of the library, Fábrica das Palavras, in English Factory of the Words, connects the building both to the industrial city of Vila Franca de Xira and its site of an earlier factory building. The location between the river Tejo and a train line isolates the library from the city center. On the other hand the position offers views to the old city and to the river.  A pedestrian bridge over the railway connects however the library to the city. The architecture of this library which was opened in September 2014 is impressive.  In planning perhaps the architecture has been more important than the library activities and functionality. The interior is elegant but a little bit chilly and does not offer cosy areas to work, read and to spend time in. The exhibition unit and the lecture hall are spacious and there is a toy library for children.  A place is reserved for a cafeteria. The open interior structure causes acoustic problems. FOUR stars.