Library Watch
Renovated phone booths aim to nurture local citizen’s reading habit

A growing number of cultural facilities have mushroomed all over the city in recent years, including the reading kiosks that have been converted from the traditional street-side telephone booths, the mini karaoke booths that have begun to provide poem recitation service, and the private libraries which used to be off-limit to ordinary people but have now opened to the public around the clock.

The street-side telephone booths, which were once obsoleted due to the popularization of mobile phones, have been “revived.” On March 25, 2018, six reading kiosks converted from such phone booths made their debut on Hengshan Road and Fuxing Road in Xuhui District. The whole project took a total of six months, including the design, the renovation and the visits paid to the former residence of celebrities, the publishing houses and reading organizations. The six kiosks include the so-called “book-crossing booth,” “celebrity booth” and “one-book booth.” People can read and exchange books in the “book-crossing booth.” They can also participate in a series of activities by subscribing WeChat account “Book Crossing.” The “celebrity booth” provides books on historic celebrities and famous writers who lived in Xuhui. In the “one-book booth,” a book worth reading will be recommended to readers on a regular basis.