About us

The library is a public place and a meeting place. It offers information, education, culture and experiences to city residents.

The information services and the extensive and versatile collections are at the core of the library services. In addition to books, library users can also borrow music, films, audiobooks, periodicals, video games and e-books.

The library offers exhibitions and events: a literature festival, book circles, children's story hours, and much more.

Photo: Jussi Tiainen


  • Customer service orientation: The library provides customers in different age groups with a wide range of information and recreation services. 
  • Reliability: The library offers all customers equal access to knowledge and education. 
  • Social responsibility: The library forms a part of the community's social safety net.
  • Competence: The library maintains and develops the professional competence of the staff to meet current and future needs.


The networked library provides access to sources of knowledge and experiences. The library takes into account the regional needs and promotes the cultural and linguistic rights of citizens.


The library is a meeting place and a centre of education, culture and experiences. It is an irresistible point of vantage to return to.


The customer is the focus of the Vaasa city library. The library provides versatile and multifaceted services through a competent staff, successful collections of materials, a functional and efficient information technology, successful communications and a good cooperation with different partners. By providing information, recreation services and cultural experiences, the library gives all citizens an equal opportunity to maintain and enhance their cultural capital.


The first lending library in Finland, Wasa Reading Library was founded 2.8.1794 as a library for the members of the Wasa Reading Society, but it soon became a library open to all residents of Vaasa. The library ceased operations in 1844.

A new library, Wasa city library (Waasan Kaupunginkirjasto), opened in 1851. Disappointingly, the library never became popular with the public. To address the problem, a new library called the People's Library (Kansankirjasto) was founded in 1863. In 1911 it was renamed City Library.

City architect Carl Schoultz began planning a new building for the library in 1932. The work was continued by Einar Flinckenberg, and finished by city architect Ingvald Serenius in 1933. In 1936, the library relocated to Kirjastonkatu 13, where the main library remains even today. In 2001, the old library building was renovated and a new glass extension added.

The main library opened in its current form 4.9.2001. President Halonen and her husband participated in the inauguration in October 2001. The Helsinki-based architects firm Lahdelma & Mahlamäki redesigned the old library building and designed the new the extension. The interior design is by Gullsten & Inkinen, also from Helsinki. The planning took several years, and the library staff was involved in the process. The library has a floor space of 5,245 square metres.

In 1968, the Vaasa city library became the fifth library in Finland to receive regional library rights, with the official name then becoming Vaasa city library-Provincial library.

In 2018, the regional libraries will be replaced by nine libraries with a regional development responsibility. These libraries will support the development of the public libraries and the professional competence of library staff, and promote mutual cooperation between the public libraries within their area of operation. The Vaasa city library will be responsible for the regional development in Ostrobothnia and Southern and Central Ostrobothnia.

Information about the library


Service points

  • Service points: 8 library units, 2 hospital libraries and 1 mobile library
  • Extended hours libraries: 2 library units
  • Total opening hours: 19 423 hours


  • Borrowers: 23 652
  • Library visits: 593 022
  • Web visits: 397 925
  • Customers of Celia: 527


  • Collections: 601 729
  • Acquisitions: 17 619
  • Loans: 1 095 473
  • Disposals: 47 878


  • Collections: eBooks: 6002
  • Acquisitions: eBooks: 2873
  • Loans: eBooks instances of use: 9248
  • eMusic: logins: 1016
  • Loans: eMusic instances of use: 5886
  • Loans: eMagazines instances of use: 68 712
  • Loans: eDatabase instances of use: 11 420

Events and user training

  • Exhibitions: 41
  • Events: 1093
  • Attendance at events: 12 653
  • User training: 678
  • User training: total number of participants: 15 342

Economy and personnel

  • Person years: 49,30
  • Expenditures in the statistical year: 4 216 067

Statistics from 31.12 2019.

Source: Finnish Public Libraries Statistics