Tampere City Library’s new mobile library, Kosmos, started touring its routes in January 2021. The mobile library has special structural features as it is not built on a bus frame, like most libraries on wheels, but on a truck frame.
One of the reasons for this unusual solution was the technical specifications of the loading dock of Tampere’s main library Metso. New material gets loaded from the back to the vehicle and the loading dock is relatively high, so the truck frame provided an easier solution for the logistics.
The new library truck offers a possibility for a more spacious display of books, which hopefully attracts people to borrow books even more eagerly than before. Idea was to move away from the fully packed 'book depository' like mobile library to a more attractive display of the collection. The interior of Kosmos is made easily modifiable and the shelves can be even removed completely if needed. The vehicle has a projector and a screen as well as mood lighting, so there are possibilities to arrange film nights or even discos.
The name Kosmos was given as a result of public name competition. Altogether 237 suggestions for a new name was submitted. Kosmos or Kosmo got several mentions and in the end the jury chose Kosmos to be most suitable. The beautiful artwork on the outside of the vehicle is by graphic designer, illustrator, and childrens book author Nora Surojegin.
Read more about Kosmos on Yle website in Finnish. If you are interested to see more of the artwork and the interior of Tampere’s new mobile library, check out the introduction video with Finnish commentary.