Exercise machines…a makerspace for kids…super comfy chairs…even a cooking demo kitchen. Forget your old notions of what a library is and get ready for some major FUN at the new Tampines Regional Library, mama!
Growing up, going to the the library was a weekly affair for my two sisters and me. Every single Saturday, our dad would drop us off at the neighbourhood library and we’d spend HOURS picking books to take home for the week. Somehow we all grew up and stopped going to libraries anymore – I can’t imagine why – especially after having had a look at the brand new Tampines Regional Library which just re-opened its doors at the also-new Our Tampines Hub last week!
As we were taken through all five floors of the library, I couldn’t believe how libraries had evolved! The last one I’d been in about two decades ago seemed so dull!
Here are some of my fave features from the awesome new Tampines Regional Library:
LEVEL 2: CULINARY + MAGAZINES LEVEL
The library starts with the lobby on Level 2, and it opens straight up to endless shelves of cooking books. I was immediately sold — one can never have too many cookbooks! On top of that, the left side of the room is lined with two large rooms for culinary workshops!
Walking further in, the space opens up to a section where you can browse your latest favourite magazines (without having to buy them every month!). Couches are set up along a large floor-to-ceiling window facing the stadium so you can watch the game while enjoying a magazine. It’s not all just about lazing around, though, because the library has also set up exercise machines that you can cycle on while you flip through the latest National Geographic!
LEVEL 3: KIDS 0 – 6
Moving on to level 3, we have an entire floor dedicated just for kids 0-6 years old. Even then it has been further sectioned off into two parts, one for kids 0-3 and another for kids 4-6. There are comfy corners everywhere for kids to get cozy and cuddle up with their favourite books. Storytelling sessions (in both Chinese and English) sometimes take place here, too. My daughter Surina couldn’t stop pointing to at least 10 books she wanted to get started on!
LEVEL 4: Older kids + teens
Here’s where I found my favourite collection as a teen – the Nancy Drew series! On this same level, the library also has the IMPixel Labs – a really cool lab room for tinkerers and makers. Be sure to check the library’s list of events for all sorts of workshops for kids aged 6 and up! A few upcoming events on the calendar include Virtual Reality with Google Cardboard, Ozobot Programming for Kids, A Makey Makey Workshop with Scratch, and Code Your Own Animation!
LEVEL 5 & 6: A Place for Us Adults!
And here it was…. Where I’ve decided I will definitely spend a few hours a month (at least). There are sections with tables & chairs where I could park myself for a few hours to work. Or cosy seating areas with plush leather chairs if I feel like curling up with a novel.
Visiting the new Tampines Library has completely changed my concept of what libraries were (and can be). With tons of events and even a volunteering corner, there’s such an emphasis on community now. If their goal was to make people come back and spend more time at libraries, well, they’ve certainly found one mama who’s definitely willing to make libraries part of my weekly routine again (this time with a little one in tow)!
Opening Hours: Mon – Sun: 10:00 AM – 09:00 PM
Tampines Regional Library, 1 Tampines Walk, #02-01 Our Tampines Hub, Singapore 528523, www.facebook.com/TampinesRL