News: America's first fully digital public library without a single book is set to open this autumn in San Antonio, Texas, and will be based on the design of an Apple store.
BiblioTech is being touted as America's first bookless public library system, with the prototype site in San Antonio hoping to offer 150 e-readers, 50 computer stations, 25 laptops and 25 tablets to local readers.
Bexar County Judge Nelson Wolff said he was inspired to pursue the project after reading a biography of Apple founder Steve Jobs. "If you want to get an idea what it looks like, go into an Apple store," he told a local newspaper.
Describing himself as an avid reader with a collection of 1000 first editions, he explained that the bookless library is a timely response to the rise of tablets and e-books. "Books are important to me," he said. "But the world is changing and this is the best, most effective way to bring services to our community."
"You will be able to check out a book, read it on-site. It will be a learning environment – you'll be able to learn about technology itself as well as access a tremendous amount of information," he added.
Library users will be able to read books on any of the devices in the library, take out an e-reader for a short period of time, or even load books onto their own e-reader.
Last month we reported on Foster + Partners' plans to overhaul New York Public Library by inserting a contemporary lending library into unused reading rooms.
We've featured lots of libraries on Dezeen, including a library in Italy surrounded by a shallow pool of water and another in France with a knobbly concrete facade.
Images are courtesy of Bexar County, Texas
Top image of e-reader from Shutterstock