GGG City Library, Basel

The modern library in old Schmiedenhof

The town library of Basle counts around 750,000 visitors a year. The area has been doubled as a result of the modernisation and expansion. One of the major challenges was to combine the historical structure of the guild house Schmiedenhof with the current needs of a media centre.

The inner courtyard with its striking tower has been designed to work as an open urban space and as a stage for open air events.

Restoration is at the heart of the architectural concept. It involves making significant corrections in terms of preserving this historical building. The interior construction work added earthquake protection and new internal access whereby the room plan is designed to give clear orientation.


Interior Design

Lingering and mingling. A new utilization concept simplifies orientation for the 750,000 visitors and gives the Mediathek the space it deserves, while the new entrance with its Café and events area enhances it as a place for people to meet. A high-contrast, intensive colour scheme gives the new interior a modern, cheery ambience.


Year 2015
Contact person Jürg Toffol
Client GGG Basel
Architect Itten+Brechbühl AG
Planning 2012
Start of construction 2013
Start of operation 2015
Surface 2500 m2
Photos Lilli Kehl, Basel