WAN Awards 2018

FRIDAY 25 MAY 2018

WAN Jobs
News Review
WAN Urban Challenge
WAN Awards
Previous Next

Chongqing Library, Chongqing, China

Wednesday 23 Jun 2010

Free exchange

Chongqing Library by Perkins Eastman in Chongqing, China
Tim Griffith 
Chongqing Library by Perkins Eastman in Chongqing, China Chongqing Library by Perkins Eastman in Chongqing, China Chongqing Library by Perkins Eastman in Chongqing, China Chongqing Library by Perkins Eastman in Chongqing, China
Your comments on this project

No. of Comments: 0

Add comments | More comments

Be the first to comment
Award Entry

Transforming a repository for books into an engaging civic landmark 

The new 50,000 sq m (540,000 sq ft) Chongqing Library is a stunning urban complex that respects the long and unique culture of its predecessor while looking toward this energetic region’s future. The program exemplifies the transformation from a simple ‘repository for books’ into a civic center that includes an exhibition hall, computer facilities, ancient archives and reading rooms. Features such as hotel rooms for visiting scholars, a public theater, a conferencing center and restaurant also help redefine the library as a civic destination.

To convey the importance of this new civic landmark, the design concept was predicated on the notion that learning, knowledge, and the exchange of ideas must be free, open, and accessible to all. To reinforce this notion, the building is sheathed almost entirely in glass, actively engaging the public and welcoming them in. The facade is inscribed with selected quotes from scholars - ranging from Chairman Mao and President Roosevelt to renowned philosophers including Socrates and Confucius - all reinforce the empowerment, knowledge, and freedom gained from learning.

The building’s form is based on both the Chinese architectural tradition of the courtyard and the interior multi-storey atrium halls of traditional Western libraries. The courtyard of the library deviates from tradition in that it is visibly open to public. Approaching the library, visitors see a sculptural reflecting pool that cascades into the central courtyard garden. Boundaries between inside and outside are purposely blurred, allowing users to feel that they are in a place of nature and serenity. Interior reading rooms take the form of floating platforms amidst a forest of tree-like Y-shaped columns.

Interiors feature granite and marble accents complemented by wood, stone, and natural tones. This overall contrast of materials is reflective of Chongqing, blending inside and out, warm and cold, traditional and modern.

Key Facts

Status Completed
Value 0(m€)
Perkins Eastman

More projects by this architect

New York Wheel Terminal

New York City College of Technology

Avenues: The World School

Porter Street Residences

Westside Multimodal Transit Centre (WSMMTC)

More Projects

Reinventing Cities

Click here to view the NEWS IN PICTURES tablet site