The Renewal

“To build this Home of the Book dedicated to People of that Book is a project that could bring blessing not just to Israel, and not just to the Jewish people worldwide, but to the entire world.”

— Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks

“The shared contemplation of books and their connection to the pressing issues of our day is critical to our identity and to our common future.”

— Shimon Peres

“For 2,000 years our treasured books were scattered, with no geographic centre of gravity. Now at long last, these volumes as well as those yet to be written, together with a wide range of other collected materials, are to have a permanent home and one where it should be—in the heart of Jerusalem…The Library will have the responsibility of nothing less than preserving and illuminating the history of the Jewish civilisation.”

— Lord Jacob Rothschild

“As a dynamic center for intellectual and artistic collaboration and creativity, it is my hope that the National Library of Israel will play an essential role in promoting mutual understanding among all people—within Israel and around the world. It is a transformative project that will preserve the past while imagining the future.”

— David S. Gottesman

The National Library of Israel’s renewal offers a vibrant and innovative expression of the Jewish people as the People of the Book.

Situated between the Knesset and the Israel Museum in the very heart of Jerusalem, the National Library of Israel’s new home will be both an architectural icon and a vibrant, pulsating center of culture—a feature of Jerusalem’s “Museum Mile.” Designed by world renowned Swiss architects Herzog & De Meuron, the new building and campus offers a stunning visual and physical manifestation of NLI’s mission and vision of openness and accessibility, welcoming audiences from Israel and around the world to engage with the Library’s priceless treasures.

The new Library is a center for lively discourse. Its educational and cultural programs draw upon the Library’s collections of primary sources in a way that seeks to bridge social and cultural gaps in society and that allows diverse constituents to learn about themselves and one another. It is an inclusive, apolitical, and irreligious source of knowledge and learning.

The Library anticipates up to 500,000 visitors and users annually, including readers, researchers and scholars, teachers, students, school groups, Jewish community missions, patrons of cultural events and domestic and international tourists. Visitors will enjoy an engaging and compelling interactive experience.

The Library building and campus features unique exhibit rooms, high tech visitor experiences, grand spaces for cultural gatherings, inviting gardens, and uniquely accessible areas housing its collections of books, manuscripts, photograph, archives, and other treasures. Visitors can also enjoy the restaurant and café.

Inspired by its collections, the new NLI building serves as an unparalleled hub for national and international cultural and educational activities in an array of dedicated spaces, including an auditorium with a seating capacity of 430, filling a much-needed niche in Jerusalem.

The open-air amphitheater and plaza is an ideal site for film festivals, summer concerts, book fairs, tour groups and more.

The new National Library of Israel is one of the most exciting and significant institutions to be built in Jerusalem in a generation. A place of direct relevance and interest to people of all ages and backgrounds, the NLI is poised to become one of Israel’s most popular landmarks, a home for one and all, and an essential component of Jewish and cultural life.

The community is grateful to the lead partners of the renewal and building project: The Rothschild Family (Yad Hanadiv), The David S. and Ruth L. Gottesman Family, and The Government of Israel.