Mini Free Libraries – in NYC Phone Booths


When is the last time you used a phone booth?  Or gone to the library?

The Department of Urban Betterment (DUB) was created by a group of creative individuals who wanted to explore the potential of design to improve the urban experience.  Their mission is to inspire the community to take ownership of their surroundings and improve them.

One project made by DUB was a  mini-library that was created inside of an unused phone booth in New York City.  Designed by architect John Lock, the library shelves were detachable, and the library fit tightly inside of a phone booth.   In its first installation, the books were gone within 6 days.

Similar to the Little Free Libraries created by residents in cities across the country, the phone booth library was intended to be a book-sharing system for anyone who came by.  Take a book, leave a book is the general idea.  For the Phone booth library, all the books were donated by local residents and the plywood was milled by Kontraptionist.  You can read more about the project on or
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About the Author

KbaumlierKristen Baumlier’s work spans the full spectrum of interdisciplinary media, including performance, interactive installation, video and audio works.View all posts by Kbaumlier →

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