Central Library

Level 4

Silence is a service in the TD Great Reading Room

The floors get quieter as you make your way up inside the Library. The peace and quiet come to a pinnacle in this space where, surrounded by wood-paneled walls and special collections, a bibliophile can read or study to their heart’s content.

The Elders’ Guidance Circle

This is a space for anyone to speak to Indigenous Elders from multiple nations. Here, Elders are able to provide education, storytelling, and a spiritual component to programming and services, including ceremony and smudges. Drop in on this level of Central Library to experience the space for yourself.

See Indigenous Placemaking in the Elders' Guidance Circle

Indigenous Placemaking in Central Library creates a welcoming environment where Indigenous people can see their culture reflected, and visitors can learn about the original inhabitants of the land that is now Calgary. Find furniture by Glenna Cardinal and a photo and text-based piece by Brittney Bear Hat in the Elders’ Guidance Circle.

Learn about Indigenous Placemaking

History surrounds you.

In Calgary’s Story, presented by Walt and Irene DeBoni, enlarged photographs give you a glimpse of what Calgary and its surrounding area used to look like. Materials celebrating the city, southern Alberta, and Western Canada’s unique stories, can be found here.

Stop by the Living History: Glimpses of Our Past installation to see a collection of the area’s history in a digital display.

Visit Calgary's Story

Contribute to the city’s shared history by telling your own stories.

Named in honour of Cyril & Dorothy Williams and Bernard & Barbara Harris through a legacy gift, the Williams & Harris Shared History Centre ensures that stories are told and collected, through new technology in the Story Studio, and old technology like microfiche machines, typewriters, and more in the Vintage Media Lab.

Explore online archives

Say hello to the Artist in Residence in their studio, or attend workshops and special programs.

  • Indigenous art and placemaking

  • Children’s art and illustration

  • The newcomer experience

Meet the current Artist in Residence

Want to chat about social, cultural, or built history?

The Historian in Residence leads workshops and lectures about Calgary, Treaty 7, and Métis Region 3 throughout their six-month residency, presented in partnership with Calgary Heritage Authority.

Imagine going to school for a week at the Library!

Library School, supported by Cenovus Energy, gives students opportunities for hands-on, inquiry-based learning, like writing, reading, drawing, listening, researching and language skills, and information and media literacy.

Your school at the Library

A comfortable, multi-purpose space at the top of the building.

The Simmons-Harvie Community Living Room, made possible through a gift from Britt Simmons and Janet Harvie, is perfect for reading, studying, socializing, or a different perspective on Calgary’s skyline.

Sit back, relax, and enjoy the view on the Julia Turnbull Terrace.

Julia decided to make a donation to name this space in honour of her favourite pastime: reading. Now you can pull up a chair to work, study, or read while enjoying breathtaking views of the city. Don’t forget to peer down to level 3 to get a new perspective on FISH.

The Print(ed) Word Exhibit

Enjoy the 12 handmade books on display on your way into the TD Great Reading Room. Located in the west vestibule, these books are a collaboration between Alberta Printmakers and Loft 112. This project is supported by the J K L MacLachlan Family Fund.