Harold Washington Library Center, Chicago Public Library, Chicago

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Library Traveler Resource
The Harold Washington Library Center is the central library for the Chicago Public Library System. It is located just south of the Loop 'L', at 400 S. State Street in Chicago, in the U.S. state of Illinois. It is a full-service library and ADA compliant. As with all libraries in the Chicago Public Library system, it has free wifi internet service. The building contains approximately 756000sqft of space. The total square footage is approximately 972000sqft including the rooftop garden penthouse, according to the Zoning department of the city of Chicago.
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The Midwest's major center for business conventions, Chicago boasts many affordable places to stay, with most hotels located around the airport and the city's central business district. To discover the city from a comfortable base within walking distance of most tourist attractions, aim for one of the big chain hotels in the downtown area. If you're traveling on a limited budget and wish to get a deeper sense of Chicago's many diverse neighborhoods, consider staying away from the pricey city center and explore suburbs on a commuter train line for easy city access.
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4.5
  • We decided to check out the Library and found great Artwork on display. The Installation over the escalators of dog tags from every soldier killed in Vietnam was amazing! We didn't expect it, and it w...  more »
  • I think former Mayor Harold Washington would be deeply humbled that his city built such an amazing structure to honor his legacy. It's like a mini Library of Congress, only more modern. It comes compl...  more »
  • Go to the 9th floor and visit the sky piazza. Then visit the exhibits. Right now there is a fun exhibit including old Ronko commercials. THere is also a good exhibit about Harold Washington.  more »
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  • Essential visit whenever in Chicago. Stunning building, inside and out. Massive collection has most anything you many desire. There is an auditorium in the basement featuring speakers often. Music CDs, especially jazz is extensive. Discarded items from the collection can also be gotten for free in a small room right off the media department on ground floor. Lots of space to study and relax. Nice exhibit room on the top floor with changing exhibits.
  • This is unacceptable. I have been trying to connect with an associate to reserve a book for over 30mins. I called, a machine answered and had me on hold. When I finally had the chance to speak to someone, she was unable to additional me and transferred me to the "first floor" (I'm not sure what it means). The phone rang and range and rang for over 3mins now one answered then got disconnected. Now try again 3 times!!
  • The best library in Chicago! Except for the transients that come to sleep and snore from opening to closing, and the loud talkers. Besides that, there's so much information here it's unbelievable.
  • This has everything you want in a library and the building itself is fantastic. Located in the middle of the South Loop, its is definitely a place to visit when you're in town, or to come by whenever you're downtown. Don't miss the Winter Garden on the top floor! It is breathtakingly beautiful and serene.
  • I've been here many times and will continue to go. The librarians are very helpful and friendly--better than what you find in the burbs. I don't think it's a great place to study or work because there are a number of people using it as a daytime shelter to sleep and hang out. I basically look for books, check out, and leave.