Ministry of Culture: Saudi Arabia to convert public libraries into cultural hubs

The Kingdom aims to establish 153 public libraries by 2030…

Public libraries in the Kingdom will soon be developed into cultural hubs as per a new initiative announced by Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Culture.

It will be overseen by the Libraries Authority and with an aim to make public libraries an interactive platform that houses the different arts while embracing all creatives under one framework.

The decision was announced on June 18, 2020, by the ministry and is an initiative by Prince Badr bin Abdullah bin Mohammed bin Farhan Al Saud, Minister of Culture of Saudi Arabia.

According to an official post by the ministry, one of the three main goals of the initiative is to transform public libraries into a comprehensive and modern social concept to create an interactive space to embrace creators of all types.

They hope to promote libraries as beacons of cultural radiation in the region while providing an opportunity for individuals from different communities to learn and interact for a unique cultural experience.

Calling the public libraries ‘cultural houses’, the ministry outlined components which will be included in the development plans such as training rooms which will be used to host various workshops and multiple halls.

Integrated theatres will host theatrical plays and music performance and there will even be screens for visual and cinematic viewings.

The libraries will be open to serve readers and researchers and there will be several open areas where they can read.

All the new public libraries will be based on this same concept.

The Kingdom aims to establish 153 public libraries by 2030 with the first 13 libraries set to be completed in 2022.

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