Accessibility: prepare your visit to the Bibliothèque nationale de France

Assistance for visitors with disabilities at François-Mitterrand site

The Research Library (Haut-de-Jardin level) is open to all 16 years and up.
In each reading room, two seats are reserved for persons with reduced mobility and accompanying persons.

In the reading rooms of the Research Library (Rez-de-jardin level), at the François-Mitterand site, a certain number of seats are reserved for persons with reduced mobility.
When booking online, please select a ‘Reduced mobility’ seat.
If necessary, documents from closed stacks can be taken to the reader by a staff member.
In rooms M and U, visually impaired people can reserve specific booths fitted out with an equipement adapted to their needs (Cabines déficience visuelle).

Application for the visually impaired

Visyally impaired users can download on their smartphone the application  AudioSpot to be guided IN FRENCH ONLY  to and inside the François-Mitterrand site.

The applicarion is based on geolocation, permitting to visuallly impaired uses to move around independently inside the library, but also to access to the building from metro station 14 and RER station C.


installation und utilization guide for the audioSpot application [in French]

Itinerary advice if you use public transport


Line 89
Bus stops:

  • Avenue de France to reach the East and West entrances
  • François Mauriac or rue Aron to reach the West entrance. Please note that you will need to climb up or skirt around the stairs.

Line 62
Bus stops:

  • Bibliothèque François-Mitterrand
  • Bibliothèque François-Mitterrand - Avenue de France

Line 64
Bus stops:

  • Bibliothèque François-Mitterrand
  • Tolbiac - Bibliothèque François-Mitterrand

Line 132
Bus stop:

  • Bibliothèque François-Mitterrand

Line 325
Bus stops:

  • Bibliothèque François-Mitterrand
  • Bibliothèque François-Mitterrand. Avenue de France
  • Tolbiac - Bibliothèque François-Mitterrand


Line 6: West entrance (escalators, stairs and lift).

Line 14 (easily accessible for users with disabilities): East entrance (escalators, stairs and lift). If the lift is out of order, you are invited to use the RER C exit.

RER C line: East entrance (escalator to reach Line 14)

Access to the building

Some stairs encircle the library on three of its sides. They lead to the horizontal platform – the esplanade – where you will find the East and West entrances.

The stairs slowly decline along the rue Raymond Aron and the rue Emile Durkheim. In both streets, the gradient is 5%. Direct access is possible via the Avenue de France.

You will find some lifts near the East and West entrances. These lifts provide direct access to the entrance halls:East hall and West hall (hall des Globes).

  • Principal entrance (East entrance):lifts in free access. In case the elevators are out of order, people with disabiblities can use the elevator located on the left, about ten metres further in the direction of the garden (please press the button for a few seconds).
    A priority line is reserved to people with disabilities.
  • West entrance:Due to safety measures taken in the framework of Vigipirate Plan, the West entrance of François-Mitterrand library is closed.

Please note

When the weather is wet and rainy, you are invited to follow the anti-slip path on the platform or along the stairs. At François-Mitterrand site, the platform is currently fit out to offer a safe and waymarked path to the East entrance hall.
  • Starting point of the guiding path: two monumental pillars located at the beginning of the Avenue de France and beside the Passerelle Simone de Beauvoir point out the institution. They are both equipped with a touch screen plan in large characters and a sound terminal. The sound terminal is activated via a remote control intended to visually-impaired people. The system is similar to the one used at crossroads equipped with audible traffic signal.
  • The guiding path starts from the pillars. An anti-slip material was used to draw on the floor a series of points and lines that change further users advance towards the library. The path is delimited by two guiding strips wide enough to let wheelchairs advance safely to the main entrance (East entrance hall).
  • Some sound terminals orient visually-impaired users, indicating the necessary changes of direction all along the path.
  • Benches offering three sitting height positions are available along the path.

car parks

A public car park is accesible on rue Émile Durkheim.

Upon presenting a justificatory document, a mobility impaired person can use the staff car park (entrance from Quai François Mauriac, 1.90 maximum height) which lifts provide direct access to the halls. He/she will be greeted in the car park.
Due to safety measures taken in the framework of Vigipirate Plan, it is imperative to call the 00 33 (1) 53 79 37 37 or send an email at mentioning the name and surname of persons present in the vehicule, the vehicule identification number, the day and reason of your visit and the arrival and departure hours. This must be made at least two days before your visit.

Entrance to the car park is possible

  • Monday to Saturday, from 9 AM. to 2.30 PM
  • On Sunday, from 11:45 AM to 1.45 PM

On site

Guide dogs are allowed in the building.
Wheelchairs are available on request in the cloakrooms. An identity paper must be temporarily left in the cloakrooms.

reception by appointment

Assistance can be provided to visitors from the outside to the reading rooms, exhibition areas or auditoriums. This service has been particularly conceived to answer visitors’ requests and help them make the best use of the library.
It is available during the opening hours of the library at François-Mitterrand site. If you plan to come during week-ends, please prepare your visit and call us several days in advance.


Practical information for the François-Mitterrand site

assistance for visitors to the reading rooms and exhibitions

Access to reading rooms and exhibitions is free for the disabled person and the person accompanying him/her on presentation of ID.

Disabled people and pregnant women benefit from priority access.

The Public Library of the François-Mitterrand site is aaccessible to all age 16 and up

The Researche Library ( François-Mitterrand site, Richelieu site, Arsenal Library, Opera Library-Museum) is open to all age 18 and up upon justification of academic, professional or personnal research. Inscriptions of disabled people aret treated with priority and particular attention.

In the reading rooms of the Research Library (Rez-de-jardin level), at the François-Mitterand site, a certain number of seats are reserved for persons with reduced mobility.
When booking online, please select a ‘Reduced mobility’ seat.

to know more about the guided visits of our exhibitons [in FrEnch]

assistance for visitors on the Richelieu site

Due to renovation work at Richelieu site, the building is not easily accessible to visitors with disabilities.


Practical information for the Richelieu Site




Accueil des personnes en situation de handicap

Téléphone : 01 53 79 37 37 du lundi au vendredi de 9h à 17h, ou par courriel à