Trip Planner:   USA  /  Arizona  /  Central Arizona  /  Phoenix  /  Miscellaneous  /  Burton Barr Central Library
Burton Barr Central Library, Phoenix
(4.6/5 based on 150+ reviews on the web)
The Burton Barr Central Library is the central library of Phoenix, Arizona. It is the flagship location and administrative headquarters for the Phoenix Public Library.HistoryDWL Architects and Will Bruder teamed to design the building. It incorporates a Buckminster Fuller tensegrity structure in its roof and featured motorized louvers on its south face for improved sun control (they never worked properly and were disconnected years ago). The library is physically oriented for a display of sunlight alignment on equinox days.The building was funded by a 1988 bond issue and replaced a nearby 1950s-era facility on McDowell Road that is now part of the Phoenix Art Museum. The location opened in May 1995 and is 280,000 square feet (26,000 m²) on five stories. Most of the fifth floor is an open, 1acre reading room. The entire building is connected by a five-floor glass-and-steel elevator and stairwell known as the "Crystal Canyon." It was named in honor of Burton Barr, the Republican Major Leader in the Arizona House of Representatives from 1966 to 1986. There are over 705,000 items in the collection.In 2008, the library was chosen as one of the Phoenix Points of Pride. In 2010, the library received a LEED Existing Buildings Silver 2.0 designation. The library was awarded in the "existing buildings" category, rather than new construction, as LEED was not created until 1998, three years after the facility was opened.
By using our Phoenix trip itinerary builder, you can arrange your visit to Burton Barr Central Library and other attractions in Phoenix.
Source
Create a full Phoenix itinerary
map

Plan your trip to Phoenix

  • Get a personalized plan

    A complete day-by-day itinerary
    based on your preferences
  • Customize it

    Refine your plan. We'll find the
    best routes and schedules
  • Book it

    Choose from the best hotels
    and activities. Up to 50% off
  • Manage it

    Everything in one place.
    Everyone on the same page.

Plans in Phoenix by other users

3 days in Phoenix BY A USER FROM CANADA December, popular PREFERENCES: December ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 7 days in Prescott, Williams & Phoenix BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES December, teens, popular PREFERENCES: December, teens ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 8 days in Phoenix, Rancho Mirage & Los Angeles BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES December, teens, kids, outdoors, beaches, museums, popular PREFERENCES: December, teens, kids, outdoors, beaches, museums ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 5 days in Phoenix BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES December, culture, outdoors, relaxing, historic sites, popular PREFERENCES: December, culture, outdoors, relaxing, historic sites ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 14 days in United States & Pandino BY A USER FROM ITALY August, kids, outdoors, popular PREFERENCES: August, kids, outdoors ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 5 days in Central Arizona BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES August, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: August ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 16 days in United States BY A USER FROM ITALY February, popular PREFERENCES: February ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 5 days in United States BY A USER FROM PHILIPPINES February, popular PREFERENCES: February ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 15 days in United States BY A USER FROM PHILIPPINES January, historic sites, popular PREFERENCES: January, historic sites ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 3 days in Phoenix BY A USER FROM AUSTRALIA January, popular PREFERENCES: January ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 11 days in Fort Worth, Williams & Phoenix BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES July, slow & easy, hidden gems PREFERENCES: July ATTRACTION STYLE: Hidden gems PACE: Slow & easy 17 days in Phoenix, Washington DC & East Coast of USA BY A USER FROM INDIA May, kids, historic sites, museums, popular PREFERENCES: May, kids, historic sites, museums ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium
View more plans
Reviews
TripAdvisor
  • I have lived in Phoenix most of my life and this is my first visit to this library. It is an incredible place. I love architecture. It is a beautiful building. A lot of attention paid to the inside an...  more »
  • Normally, one would presume that a library has books to peruse. Well, buckle up, buttercup! Not only does this place have books, they also lend out A/V media like, DVDs and CDs of music. Heck, half of...  more »
  • Visited the end of October 2016 and this is definitely a must see when you are in Phoenix. It's a 5 floor library with one of the floors used for administration. There is a glass elevator to ride from...  more »
Google
  • Great place to read and study. Free wi-fi and relatively quiet areas to sit down in comfortable seats and desks.
  • Largest selection of reading material of any library in Arizona other than a University. I'd give it 5 stars but, it can at times be very loud. Since when does a library allow Loud Talking?! Also be very careful if you happen to live close by and decide to bike there. Even though there are cameras everywhere I'm told by the staff that bike theft is not unusual at this location. For business owners or those who think they may have a great idea for a business this library has many classes to help. Check the second floor at "The Hive"
  • I like this library. I've been coming here since I was a kid. The fifth floor is great. Nice place to study; its cool, somewhat quiet, and nice views of up and downtown. I am sad to say, if I was a parent, Im not sure if I would let my kids come here. Ive seen some weird stuff here. Ive seen peeps drinking hooch-yes, straight up, jailhouse, orange peel and jolly rancher, pruno juice. A bum fight in the restrooms. I still give it five stars, though. Ample parking, a lot of it covered. Nice staff. Nice design.
  • This is a large library, which I enjoy, that is right off the Lightrail & stays open late several nights each week. I also like to schedule & use their Study Rooms for a little more privacy. Plus, they have The HIVE for entrepreneur/small business support. The staff has always been friendly & helpful. I wish they wouldn't SHOUT multiple closing reminders: 15-min, 10-min, 5-min, & CLOSED!
  • Huge selection of books. Very nice selection of newly published items as well. The video selection seems quite large but, I've never been able to locate anything I want except via placing an item on hold in advance. Seems as if the video selections are one of the most popular. Rather large number of computers are available although the recent change of allowing 2 hours time per visit makes the wait time less than reasonable in my opinion. I believe this may be due to some recent political considerations concerning the homeless and if so then it is understandable. The wifi is fairly decent though and there is a room on the 2nd floor that is designated a "quite room" where electrical outlets are readily available. As this is a downtown venue there are large numbers of homeless people but, not to worry, being poor and homeless isn't a condition that is catching! And from my personal experience they mostly don't bite! I'd love to give this place 5 stars but, long ago they closed the small coffee shop. For some unspoken reason they refuse to reopen it? The times when they're open have been reduced in the past. Hopefully this will change sometime in the future. Wonderful staff.