Montrealers Compare Library Falling Glass Problem With Olympic Stadium

Going to the library could be dangerous to your health. The $98-million Grande Bibliotheque - Quebec’s main library and archive - has been falling apart a few pieces at a time.

Glass panels have been slipping from the library’s exterior but book lovers and pedestrians will be protected in a novel way - a proposed safety perimeter of gardens, trees and awnings, also the most affordable option.

The library, located in the downtown area near the main bus station, opened with great fanfare in spring of 2005.

Since then, 10 glass panels on the outside of the modern structure have crashed to the sidewalk, but no one has been injured.

Laboratory tests done for the downtown City of Montreal borough where the library is located found that more than 30 per cent of the 6,200 panels didn’t meet national standards for tempered glass.

Temporary fencing has been installed on the sidewalk near the library to keep pedestrians out of harm’s way.

“We’re talking about the possibility of having a few more breakages over the next years,” library spokeswoman Helen Panaioti said in an interview Wednesday.

“But, according to the information provided by our experts, the possibility is exponentially reduced over time,” Panaioti said.

She said “the worst has already occurred.”

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600450 Montrealers Compare Library Falling Glass Problem With Olympic Stadium glassonweb.com

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