Malory Speer

Written by Malory Speer

Modified & Updated: 28 May 2024

Jessica Corbett

Reviewed by Jessica Corbett


Oodi Central Library is an architectural marvel and a cultural hub located in the heart of Helsinki, Finland. Designed by ALA Architects, this modern masterpiece opened its doors to the public in December 2018. Oodi, which means “ode” in Finnish, is a fitting name for this tribute to knowledge and literature.

With its striking design and innovative features, Oodi Central Library has quickly become an iconic landmark. Its unique structure boasts a striking combination of wood, glass, and steel, creating a visually stunning aesthetic that perfectly blends with the surrounding cityscape.

Beyond its breathtaking architecture, Oodi Central Library is much more than just a building. It is a vibrant community space that offers a wide range of services and activities for everyone. From its extensive collection of books and digital resources to its state-of-the-art facilities, Oodi is a haven for knowledge seekers, creatives, and enthusiasts of all ages.

Key Takeaways:

  • Oodi Central Library is a modern marvel in Helsinki, offering a vast collection of resources, state-of-the-art technology, and a welcoming community space for people of all ages and interests.
  • With its innovative design inspired by the Finnish flag, Oodi Central Library symbolizes open democracy, sustainability, and the seamless integration of traditional and digital libraries.
Table of Contents

The design is inspired by the Finnish flag.

The striking architecture of Oodi Central Library mirrors the colors and shape of the Finnish flag, with its white exterior and rectangular form resembling the flag’s blue cross.

Oodi is the newest and largest public library in Helsinki.

Opened to the public in December 2018, Oodi spans over 17,000 square meters, making it the largest library in Helsinki and a true cultural hub.

It offers an extensive collection of books and resources.

Oodi is home to more than 100,000 books, magazines, newspapers, and other materials, catering to readers of all ages and interests.

The library is a hotspot for technology enthusiasts.

Oodi Central Library boasts a state-of-the-art makerspace equipped with 3D printers, laser cutters, sewing machines, and other tools, allowing patrons to bring their creative ideas to life.

Oodi is a treasure trove of digital resources.

With its high-speed internet connection and numerous computers, Oodi provides easy access to digital resources, e-books, and online databases for research and learning.

It has become a popular gathering place for the community.

Oodi offers cozy reading nooks, comfortable seating areas, and a spacious terrace with stunning city views, attracting people from all walks of life who come to read, study, socialize, or simply enjoy the tranquil atmosphere.

Oodi is renowned for its impressive events and activities.

The library hosts a wide range of events, including workshops, seminars, concerts, art exhibitions, and even a rooftop cinema, ensuring there is always something exciting happening at Oodi.

It houses a magnificent cinema within its premises.

Oodi’s state-of-the-art cinema screens a diverse selection of films, showcasing both classic movies and contemporary masterpieces.

The library embraces sustainability.

Oodi is designed to be eco-friendly, incorporating energy-efficient systems, sustainable materials, and a green rooftop garden that contributes to the overall environmental well-being of the city.

Oodi Central Library encourages active participation.

Visitors can engage in various activities such as yoga classes, language courses, coding workshops, and book clubs, fostering a sense of community and lifelong learning.

It offers multilingual services.

Oodi provides services and resources in multiple languages, catering to Helsinki’s diverse population and welcoming people from different cultural backgrounds.

Oodi is a symbol of open democracy.

With its open-access policy, Oodi symbolizes the importance of free access to knowledge and information, promoting democratic values and equal opportunities for all.

The library features a dedicated children’s section.

Oodi’s children’s section offers a stimulating environment for young readers, with specially designed spaces for storytelling, play, and exploration.

Oodi is a bridge between traditional and digital libraries.

While embracing modern technology, Oodi also preserves the essence of traditional libraries by providing quiet reading areas, cozy bookshelves, and a peaceful ambiance.

It offers breathtaking views from its rooftop terrace.

Oodi’s rooftop terrace provides panoramic views of Helsinki, allowing visitors to admire the city’s landmarks while enjoying a cup of coffee or relaxing in the sun.

Oodi Central Library has become an architectural icon.

Since its inauguration, Oodi has garnered international acclaim for its innovative architecture, receiving numerous awards and recognition as a symbol of modern design and cultural excellence.

These 16 fascinating facts about Oodi Central Library merely scratch the surface of what this remarkable institution has to offer. Visit Oodi and immerse yourself in a world of knowledge, creativity, and community.


In conclusion, Oodi Central Library is an architectural gem and a cultural hub that offers so much more than just books. From its beautiful design and sustainable features to its wide range of services and activities, Oodi Central Library truly captures the essence of a modern, inclusive and community-oriented library. Whether you’re a book lover, a technology enthusiast, or simply seeking a place to relax and immerse yourself in knowledge, Oodi Central Library is definitely worth a visit. So, next time you find yourself in Helsinki, be sure to stop by and experience the wonder of Oodi Central Library for yourself.


1. What is the concept behind Oodi Central Library’s design?

The concept behind Oodi Central Library’s design is to create a space that promotes openness, accessibility, and community engagement. The building’s architecture seamlessly combines the traditional library concept with modern elements, offering an inviting and versatile space for people of all ages and interests.

2. What kind of services can I expect to find at Oodi Central Library?

Oodi Central Library offers a wide range of services, including a vast collection of books, magazines, and newspapers, digital resources, multimedia materials, meeting rooms, studios, and even a cinema. Additionally, there are various workshops, events, and exhibitions organized regularly to engage the community and foster learning.

3. Is Oodi Central Library environmentally friendly?

Yes, Oodi Central Library is known for its sustainability features. The building incorporates sustainable materials, energy-efficient systems, and green spaces to minimize its environmental impact. It also utilizes renewable energy sources and implements waste management practices to ensure a sustainable operation.

4. Can I access Oodi Central Library’s resources online?

Absolutely! Oodi Central Library provides digital access to its resources, allowing users to browse the library’s extensive collection, access eBooks and eAudiobooks, and even attend online workshops and events. The library’s online platform makes it convenient for users to connect with information and services from anywhere, at any time.

5. Are there any special events or activities at Oodi Central Library?

Yes, Oodi Central Library hosts a variety of events and activities throughout the year. From author talks and book clubs to coding workshops and art exhibitions, there is always something exciting happening at Oodi. Keep an eye on their website or social media pages for the latest updates on upcoming events.

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