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Gail Borden Public Library, Elgin

Categories: Libraries, Traveler Resources
Inspirock Rating:
4.7/5 based on 65+ reviews on the web
Gail Borden Public Library is located in Elgin. To visit Gail Borden Public Library and get the most from your holiday in Elgin, create itinerary details personal to you using our Elgin vacation trip planner.
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  • I spend a lot of time in my local library back home and love it there. But this one takes the cake! There was an interactive biomechanical exhibition on at the time, which was open to all, so that was...  read more »
  • This library has a large selection of books striped on different shelves with an order. To the Fund some armchairs comfortable and some tables with connection to the light and of front a spectacular view, all a conjunction of elements that make of this place special. Is a space to really study, with the conditions necessary to be quiet and read. READ GROWN! Excellent visit...
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  • What a amaizing place to take the family for the day or if you need to research for school paper or if you need peace and quiet. They have everything you need and will help with whatever you cat find ...  read more »
  • I love this library! The staff is exceptionally helpful and welcoming! I don't know where these bad reviews are coming from because I have only had good experiences. Don't let the few upset people detour you from stopping in! I think people are more likely to only want to comment when they have a complaint.
  • Beautiful place,a warming welcoming and it's my first time , but the lady at the computer center was really rude , she helped me throughout the copy machine process, I told her its my first time I come here , and she began to began conversation, but her attitude made her seen a negative person , never coming back again."Smiles very contagious and as well negative atmosphere!!!
  • An absolutely gorgeous building, seemingly built without a care in the world about cost, as if Andrew Carnegie were reincarnated and donated millions of dollars to this bastion of reading, just as he did at the turn-of-the-century when books were all the rage. A guilded-age beauty, bequeathed upon western Chicagoland by the generous taxpayers of Elgin. An expansive--while not in the least bit utilitarian--foyer and open rotunda greets you, and serves no purpose other than to allow one to stand and marvel at the ability to heat and cool such a cavern. One might wish to fly a homing pigeon in such a space; were there a breeze, perhaps loft a colorful kite. But, as the pets are forbidden and there is no wind (or books or desks) in the sterile vaulted, entry expanses of the Borden library, one just views it with awe, followed rapidly by questions of "why?". The hard digital media space on the first floor is like walking into a Borders bookstore, with racks and racks, aisles and aisles of old school media. When hard media discs were in vogue, twenty years ago, one could see similar racks at Tower Records or at the local Best Buy. It is that impressive, a true nostalgic memory-jogger for anyone born before 1998. Alas, as Borders Bookstores and Tower Records are now shuttered, and Best Buy's hard media section is no larger than one's own bedroom closet, it is wonderful that the Borden Library has erected a museum to largely-obsolete hard media. Thank you! The second floor has a reading room, circular and glassed, that is quite beautiful. If one can stand the solarium heat in the summer, and the glare on their computer screens and mobile devices year-round, it certainly is a treat to look out onto the Fox River, a secluded space in which to ponder the meaning of life from your private, padded chair in a room similar to a mausoleum--Lincoln's tomb in Springfield holds not a candle to the quietest room at Borden Library. One can spend hours here, bothered only by a handful of people passing through to look out, momentarily, the glass panes, to perhaps consider the birds striking the giant windows, or maybe an upturned shopping cart in the river, before ducking back into the functional parts of the building. The desks and study rooms are fabulous for the studying student, despite the absolute lack of feng shui. Your study desk will be in the middle of the floor, with patrons walking around you, no sense of coziness, no sense of quiet isolation; just a desk in the middle of an odd layout, as if one were in a coffee shop where the seating arrangement was intended to discourage loitering. The chairs add to this sense as they are contemporary-looking back-breakers, more fitting for an art museum than a public space. Any librarian should sit in these chairs for even two-hours before submitting the "chair request" under the next capital budget. All-in-all, a lovely space that will welcome all comers from the area, and, most importantly, an absolute gift from the taxpayers of Elgin to all communities within 20 miles of the Borden Library. Why a gift? Those towns (Geneva, St Charles, S. Elgin, Algonquin, Dundee, etc.) may disband their "new library" special task forces--just keep the current libraries (or close them) and have townspeople saunter over to Elgin's library for a day of mirth in a large public space akin to the Chicago Field Museum--missing only is Sue the Dinosaur. Find books you like? Want a DVD? Just order online on Borden's public wi-fi and, at your own library, and pick it up in a day or so. Elgin will ship it over to your local library in the library exchange borrowing program on a magic carpet of good intentions. Borden Library is an absolute Godsend for the people within the Fox Valley, a true reason (the only reason?) to venture into downtown Elgin. Thank you, citizens of Elgin, Illinois.
  • Ran in one minute before close and had a book for my daughter on hold. The very helpful staff let me grab it and check it out.
  • Excellent award-winning library.
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