The Garden Library in Tel Aviv uses books to build relationships between diverse communities and to create a sense of place in their shared neighborhood. The project, which consists of a library for children and adults as well educational and cultural programming, acts as a vibrant community center in the heart of Levinsky Park near Tel Aviv’s central bus station. With a mission to serve the area’s various populations, especially marginalized communities such as refugees, asylum-seekers, and migrant workers, the library operates through the nonprofit ARTEAM, an aid group called Melisa, and the help of around 100 committed volunteers. Containing around 3,500 books in 16 languages that span numerous genres and interests, the open-air library has a large selection of children's books and all-ages programming. The library also hosts classes on computer repair, languages, small business management, photography, and more.
The Garden Library has become an important support center for underserved communities, and it was deliberately established at a popular and central local spot. The library helps unite people of many different backgrounds around a common love of books, and it helps contribute to the unique identity of the neighborhood and a sense of community amongst its members.
*Please note that these Hall of Shame nominations were written in a moment in time (most over a decade ago) and likely have since changed or even been transformed. If the above entry is now great, or still not so great, go ahead and comment below on how it has evolved or nominate it as a great place.
On April 22nd, Milwaukee was announced as one of the six 2015 Heart of the Community cities. Over the next six months, the local project team and PPS used “Lighter, Quicker, Cheaper” (LQC) Placemaking principles to ensure that the The Spot 4MKE continued to be a collaborative, inclusive, and community-led project.