ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – If you’ve driven around Albuquerque, you may have noticed wooden little libraries where community members go to exchange books for free. Many of these libraries were created by South Los Altos Neighborhood resident Tim West.
West made his first library for his house in 2018. In 2020, he started making libraries for others after someone requested that he make one for them. To date, West has built a total of 38 libraries which are located throughout Albuquerque and one each in Texas and Arizona.
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A majority of the libraries West made were for free. “It’s really fun to imagine them in their yard, you know, and imagine kids and people coming up to them,” he explained “And I’m really not in it for the money. I mean, I could probably make a living at this but I really don’t wanna make it where it’s not fun anymore.”
West uses recycled wood and metal that he often gets from construction yards to make the libraries. West created his own business named Unique Little Libraries LLC and the name holds true as each library West creates is truly unique. For example, one library that sits outside his house spins, and another one he sold was “Harry Potter” themed. Another one of West’s pieces was a poetry post where people can display poems they wrote. “People really like them. They really think they’re cool because I make mine very colorful,” West said.
A few locations where you can visit West’s Unique Little Libraries and poetry post:
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While West doesn’t read often, he said he enjoys the process of creating the libraries and seeing people including his friends and family use them. “I see people out in the front yard all the time. You know, it’s cool, it’s cool to see people come up to it,” he explained.
Some of the libraries West created have been targeted by vandals. West is in the process of repairing one and plans to visit his libraries across the city to see if they need to be repaired or have their paint retouched. To view more of West’s work, visit his Instagram here.