ALBERTA

Take A Tour Of Calgary's New Central Public Library (PHOTOS, VIDEO)

09/23/2014 03:52 EDT | Updated 09/24/2014 10:59 EDT

Calgarians are finally getting a glimpse of what the city's new $245-million Central Public Library will look like when complete.

Calgary Municipal Land Corporation released a set of renderings and a video tour of the massive building Tuesday, giving an idea of what Calgarians can expect for both the interior and exterior.

When finished, the facility will have space for more than half a million books and will offer more than 240,000 square feet of usable space — 66 per cent more than the existing downtown library currently offers.

The space will also feature programs and areas for kids and teens, a technology commons and laboratory, and a centre to support skills development and community integration.

Story continues after the slideshow:

Calgary's New Central Public Library

Design for the library was done by Snøhetta, an international architectural firm, with the help of Canadian firm DIALOG.

"Since embarking on this project, one of the things we've kept reminding ourselves is that we don't just want to build the best library in the world. We want to build the library that's best for Calgary," Craig Dykers of Snøhetta explained in a press release.

Mayor Naheed Nenshi said the library "will be a new icon for Calgarians and a jewel of public space and opportunity for all."

Officials say they spent two years gathering input from public engagement and open houses.

Construction on the site, located in downtown's East Village, has already begun and is expected to be complete in 2018.

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