A Bookish Future for the Phone Booth

There are over 13,000 pay phones in New York City. At one time they were on the front line of connectivity, if you wanted to connect with someone you would seek one out drop in some change and presto. The advent of the cell phone changed all that. Now there are millions and millions and millions of cell phones in NYC alone. I can’t even remember the last time I used a pay phone and there is a good chance the younger folks might never use one.

So what to do with them? One New York architect has decided to turn them into communal libraries or book drops. As part of his ‘department of urban betterment‘ interventionist project John Locke has transformed the underused phone booth into a micro library.

Locke piggybacks on James Econs’s ‘phoneboox‘ concept in the UK where he set out to transform existing public architecture into a new purpose without sacrificing the original concept.

Is it the marriage of two obsolete technologies or an opportunity for a community to provide itself with some of its book needs. The next step is to be able to pick up the phone and connect to a librarian for free!

via designboom

John Metcalfe talks with John Locke about his project at The Atlantic Cities