Harold Washington Library Center

Harold Washington Library Center, Chicago: Hours, Address, Harold Washington Library Center Reviews: 4.5/5

Harold Washington Library Center

Harold Washington Library Center
4.5
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Monday
9:00 AM - 9:00 PM
Tuesday
9:00 AM - 9:00 PM
Wednesday
9:00 AM - 9:00 PM
Thursday
9:00 AM - 9:00 PM
Friday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Saturday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Sunday
1:00 PM - 5:00 PM
About
The library houses approximately two million books and is a wonderful example of Chicago's architecture.
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The area
Address
Neighborhood: Downtown / The Loop
Often visitors' first stop in Chicago, The Loop is a good starting point to sample the city's energy and flavor. This central business district boasts Michelin-rated restaurants, upscale hotels, premier shopping, and enough arresting architecture to keep your camera busy for hours. You won’t find too many photo galleries of downtown Chicago without a shot of Millennium Park and Cloud Gate (“The Bean”), one of the most iconic landmarks in the city. A stunning skyline coupled with cultural attractions like the Art Institute of Chicago present a Downtown where work and play peacefully coexist.
How to get there
  • Harold Washington Library – State/Van Buren • 1 min walk
  • Harrison • 4 min walk
Popular mentions

4.5
261 reviews
Excellent
155
Very good
86
Average
15
Poor
3
Terrible
2

Tyshondra B
1 contribution
Jan 2021
I sent an email about my getting in the library as published author from the Southside of Chicago , IL and they sent me an email on today in addition, Saying we don't want your books . They stated we got enough books on the shelf and how I trying to figure out how is one book going to take up a whole shelf and last time I emailed they said it was ok.
Written December 16, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

tink8009
Fort Worth, TX315 contributions
Sep 2021
The Harold Washington Library Center is wonderful local library. I enjoyed wandering all the floors and exploring. The children's area looks marvelous.

Wish we could have walked around the Winter Garden but it was closed.
Written September 10, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Robert L
Amherst, MA1,439 contributions
May 2021 • Couples
We stayed at a hotel across the street from the library. The exterior is dramatically beautiful. However, going inside, while it is quite nice, isn't worth the extra effort. The only entrance during the Covid rules is on the State Street side.
Written May 11, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Tanya T.
Illinois1,366 contributions
Oct 2020
A beautiful library with a wealth of resources for Chicago. I love the winter garden, it's a lovely space. The building has free programs, workshops, demos, visual arts, and wi-fi. You must also visit the winter garden on the roof!
Written November 24, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Reed S
308 contributions
Aug 2020
This is a very interestingly designed local library. While it looks much older, it is quite new. They have all the basic options as a library should, with a metropolitan design.
Written August 25, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

TakenByTravel777
Kalamazoo, MI203 contributions
Feb 2020
I love libraries, and this is worth a trip to see the exterior of the building with the owl cornices. There's also a train stop that will bring you right there. On the 9th floor, there's a beautiful open area with an indoor "garden" and a nice view of the street below. There are trees and a few tables to sit and study or work. The rest of the library was typical, but we went for the special features.
Written February 27, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

teatour_karen
Los Angeles, CA130 contributions
Feb 2020
I love architecture and this library built in the 90s has some really nice details. I just happened to walk through out of curiosity on my way to the Monadnok Building. There is a Jacob Lawrence mosaic on the ground floor and a great Vietnam Memorial in an unexpected place, right over the escalators from the ground floor.
Written February 20, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

CharlieV2011
Chicago, IL1,535 contributions
Jan 2020 • Solo
The building maybe beautiful on the outside, but inside is a different story. Yes there are books here, but this really isn’t a library. There are scores of homeless people here; people listening to music and shows on their electronic devices without headphones; and others just sitting around talking with no respect for anyone wanting silence to read or study. Most of the time, the online catalog lists inventory incorrectly. The bathrooms have people sleeping on the floor. In my opinion, I picture libraries as quiet buildings that are clean and full of resources, but this library is the opposite.
Written January 13, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Betty
2,520 contributions
Dec 2019
It is a beautiful building, there is always a special exhibit and it hosts numerous events. Of course lots of resources, artwork and a quiet place to study. You have to visit the gorgeous atrium on the 9th floor, it is quite lovely with an okay view of buildings. It is an okay place to visit if you happen to be in the area and have time to spare.

One con is using the facilities, do make sure you go with another person since you might be harassed.
Written December 31, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

zombienic
Minnesota1,184 contributions
Dec 2019 • Couples
We took the holiday train here last week and walked around on every level of this massive library. Lots of lovely architecture and artwork. The mini bean was really cute. We really liked looking at all the library models and reading the info on Mr. Washington. Unfortunately when we got to the top floor, the Winter Garden Room was closed for an event (even though it was empty).
There appeared to be homeless people sleeping at tables on every single floor. No one bothered us and it was very quiet inside. We took the escalators up to every floor and then the elevator back down to the bottom. Neat place full of knowledge!
Written December 18, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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