Queen Elizabeth II Great Court, British Museum

Sir Norman Foster and Partners

Once the books from the British Museum were transferred to the British Library, it was possible to open up the original space of the Museum creating the largest enclosed courtyard in Europe. The central Quadrangle was cleared of all structures except the rotunda/Reading Room in the center. State-of-the-art engineering created the glazed canopy, spanning the gap between the dome of the off-center Reading Room and the courtyard facades. Support columns are hidden by the limestone skin covering the Reading Room.

Left: Looking toward the entrance with the drum of the Reading Room to the right; center and right: main/front entrance into the court

Two broad stairways circle the drum of the Reading Room. The Rotunda has been enlarged on the north side to accommodate a restaurant, shops, and additional exhibit space.

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© 2003 Mary Ann Sullivan. I have photographed (on site), scanned, and manipulated all the images on these pages. Please feel free to use them for personal or educational purposes. They are not available for commercial purposes.

Page created by Mary Ann Sullivan