With a history of over two centuries, containing more than one million books and magazines, and a host of handwritten codices dating from the 9th to the 19th centuries, the National Library of Greece is the custodian of the Greek literary heritage, bridging the past, the present and the future. On the occasion of relocation, the leading institution regroups its forces and enters the digital age. In its new facilities, it redefines its relationship with the public as a space for study, research and education, a crucible for ideas and an open place for learning. Finally, for the first time, the National Library of Greece creates a Public Section which offers a separate collection for children, teenagers and adults combined with a wide range of educational and interactive programs.
Starting in 2017, the National Library of Greece successfully completed in 2018 its relocation from the Vallianeio historic neoclassical building in downtown Athens to its new premises at the SNFCC. Moving 720,760 items of the Library’s collection was a painstakingly complex and demanding venture that lasted three months. It demanded the collaboration of more than 100 people on a daily basis, the adaptation of existing spaces and tools, and it took 235 truck drives to the SNFCC for its completion. To ensure a smooth operation for transferring the items as safely as possible, new, wheeled bookcases were custom-made in order to absorb rail vibrations and prevent the items from shifting.
The special collections, including several outstanding treasures of Greece’s printed heritage, were accompanied by the Greek Police, according to the legal procedures demanded for the protection and safe delivery of our national relics. The relocation cost was €489,800 and it was fully subsidized by a capital grant of €5,414,000 issued by the Greek Ministry of Education, Research and Religious Affairs in order to support the NLG relocation venture to its new SNFCC home. This amount was added to the €5 million grant by the Stavros Niarchos Foundation. The National Library of Greece is now getting ready to open its doors to everyone who wants to experience its new, state-of-the-art technology and facilities.
For more information visit the official website of the National Library of Greece at https://www.nlg.gr/