BnF (Francois-Mitterrand library)

The French president Francois Mitterand was a visionary person who wanted to change Paris – though not all shared his visions. One of his greatest creations was the national library, situated in the south of Paris – the BnF. The original plan was for this place to contain every book written in French that ever existed in the world. It has an enormous storage capacity, and even though it was inaugurated in 1996, most of the bookshelves are still empty. The facility is gigantic and consists of four towers and an underground space with a tropical garden in it. A sophisticated system of conveyor belts and robots are responsible for the the transportation of the books. There are more than a dozen libraries; each one is designated to different fields. The BnF is a real temple of knowledge and definitely worth a visit. A tip: it is not easy to find air-conditioned sites in Paris, and this place counts as an exception that can provide an escape from mid-summer heat.


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