Work has begun on the £600,000 redevelopment of an inner-city Birmingham library.
Handsworth Library renovation will provide a new performance arena seating up to 100 people for musicians, poets, actors and storytellers.
The new library will also house additional space for Caribbean and South African writers, and community language collections.
A comprehensive IT suite and new business resources will be available for public use. Reconstruction started last week and is due to last six months.
Perry Barr district librarian Kevin Duffy said: "Handsworth Library is an important, all-inclusive and historical community resource that has been serving the community for over 100 years.
"It became clear that the library continues to have an important role to play in the community today but some radical changes have to be made for it to meet the current needs of local people."