What’s the definition of a library today?
Libraries have been for ages the source of knowledge in the city, which granted them a public role and major importance in both cities and society.
However, nowadays the boundaries of the access to information have faded, which implies that libraries should adapt to the new situation in order to keep their essential role in urban context. The boundaries of the library should fade too. The design shown here transforms the library into a new way of taking advantage of public space, merging with it just as street furniture would.
The fact that London is already a compact city where empty public places are so significant, implies that it is a perfect place where to carry out this invasion of knowledge and culture, providing an extra value to this space, rather than building and filling it up.
Keeping this idea in mind, we could end up by generating a whole network of public spaces that would work as libraries all over the city.
How to intervene?
Therefore, by means of a wired neutral structure, the design tries to evolve as a system that is capable of merging with public space in the city, allowing visitors to use such space in their own way, experiencing a place where each one brings his/her own story.
The structure will also support the scalable enclosure that will provide the site with the necessary comfort measures no matter what period of the year, adjusting to privacy of the user and the contact between the inside and the outside of the library.
This way, public space in London turns into a place where stories can be told in any format, where we can find room for anything the final user imagines, and where paper gets back its leading role, filling up shelves that will become the new furniture of streets and squares in London.
architects: Silvia Gonzalez, Andreu Pont | client: Archmedium | status: Academic Project (2015) Competition (2015) | competition: London Public Library | clasification: honour mention | location: London, united kingdom (51.503905, -0.078996) | climate: Oceanic / maritime, Temperate | materials: metal, vegetal | environment: Urban | visualizer: Studio | scale: medium | types: education, library | views: 3.640