Reconstruction of Library

Completed

Shushi Public Library

PROJECT TYPE:

Culture and Heritage

LOCATION:

Shushi, Nagorno Karabakh Republic (NKR)

DONORS:

Armenia Fund US Western Region

START:

2010

COMPLETE:

2011

COST:

$227,000

Shushi, Nagorno Karabakh Republic (NKR)

Project Details

 

Background:
The city of Shushi is the historic cultural heart of NKR. It was the site of fierce battles during the Karabakh War. When it was liberated by the Armenian forces in 1992, it lay in ruins. Subsequently the worldwide Armenian community, including Armenia Fund, helped rebuild the city. In 2009, Armenia Fund launched the large-scale “Our Shushi” program, a comprehensive development initiative that went on to rebuild the city’s infrastructure, roads, residential buildings, schools, and cultural landmarks, including the Shushi Public Library.

Problem:
The Shushi Public Library, consisting of a two-story main building and a single-level administrative wing, was in a state of severe disrepair. It required major improvements and lacked basic amenities and comforts.

Solution:
In 2011, Armenia Fund transformed the Shushi Public Library by implementing a top-to-bottom renovation. Both structures of the library were reinforced and rebuilt around new floor plans, the roofs were replaced, and the floors were covered variously with ceramic tiles and hardwood. Other improvements included the installation of up-to-date electrical and climate-control systems. Within the framework of the project, Armenia Fund also provided the library with new furniture and a state-of-the-art computer system. The latter has been utilized for not only cataloging, research, and online access, but digitizing the library’s collection.

Impact:
Since its reconstruction, the Shushi Public Library has once again emerged as a cultural powerhouse: a beautiful, comfortable, and fully computerized establishment where generations of students, readers, and researchers find inspiration and intellectual enrichment. Featuring a collection of over 20,000 books and other material (as of 2015), the library is now home to a book club, and hosts various literary events, film screenings, and even an annual international poetry festival.

 

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