Future Systems : National Library in Prague

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First and foremost : I’ve read a lot of comments about it resembling a sea monster, or those aliens from The Simpsons, and I have to say that all of the people making those comments are obviously small minded and ignorant. The design is OBVIOUSLY based on the brain slugs from Futurama [What are you people, blind? The building even has the one giant eye…].

Moving on, many of you have, no doubt, seen this project by now [I slept, I’m sorry – sat on it for two days like a clown…] – but for those you haven’t, here’s the recent competition winning design for the extension to the Czech National Library in Prague by Future Systems.

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An international design competition, the Czech National Library Competition received over 350 submissions for the 50,000 square meter addition intended to house the library’s modern collections. The competition was anonymous, and judged by jury – including British-based architects Zaha Hadid and Eva Jiricna [which to me means you can’t be surprised by the winning project].

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Located in Prague’s ‘Old Town’ within Letna Park [a World Heritage Site], the library design by Future Systems was meant to resemble a hill, blending into the building’s natural surroundings. Not content to just be crazy looking, the building has also been designed to be green, including a low velocity air circulation system placed between the floors to supply the building with a constant stream of fresh air, enough natural light for reading during 70% of the library’s open hours, and transforming the retaining walls in the building’s basement into a labyrinthine thermal mass for ‘free’ heating and cooling.

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With archives in the basement, public space / stacks on the lower floors and offices above, the library’s programmatic originality seems to come from the cafe / viewing platform [the giant window / eye looking thing, image above]. This reading room and cafe has been designed to optimize views out into the surrounding park, and overlooking this section of Prague – a World Heritage Site, as previously mentioned.

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12 POINTS

PLACE FOR THIRD MILLENNIUM

* DEMOCRATIC ARCHITECTURE IN A DEMOCRATIC STATE
* KEY WORDS AS BEAUTY, ELEGANCE, COLOUR, PLASTICITY, PEOPLE AND BOOKS
* VIEWS AS PART OF URBAN COMPOSITION
* COLOUR AS REFERENCE TO THE PAST AND FUTURE
* THE ‘STREET’ AS LINK BETWEEN OUTSIDE AND INSIDE
* BOOKS FROM STORAGE REACH READER IN LESS THAN 5 MINUTES
* BOOKS ARE PLACED BACK TO ORIGINAL POSITION IN STORAGE
* STORAGE FOR 10 MILLION VOLUMES WITH 4 MILLION EXTENDED CAPACITY
* MAXIMUM FLEXIBILITY IN THE INTERNAL BUILDING LAYOUT
* COMFORT OF SOFT FURNITURE THROUGHOUT THE BUILDING
* UNIQUE INTERNAL PLANNING REDUCES FLOOR AREA BY 30%

[from archiweb]

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via buildingdesignonline
images from skyscrapercity

Posted: March 7th, 2007
at 4:57pm by orangemenace


Categories: architecture,green arch,featured ninjas,competitions

Comments: 3 comments



 

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  1. […] While the Performing Arts Center differs from many projects by Mecanoo due to its ‘blobitecture’ shape [love it or hate it], the form itself is not as random as it may seem. Rather than creating the blob simply to place an alien shape on the site, Mecanoo has designed a building of canopies – meant to relate to the large banyan trees on the site [the largest trees in the world – look at them in relation to the building/people in the section below]. […]

     

  2. […] ::more Future Systems on MNP:: […]

     

  3. […] Nie, to wcale nie jest żart. jeÅ›li nie wierzycie, zapraszamy na poÅ›wiÄ™conÄ… projektowi stronÄ™ Biblioteki Narodowej w Pradze o której, nawiasem mówiÄ…c, nie wyrażaliÅ›my siÄ™ ze zbytnim entuzjazmem przy analizie witryn internetowych europejskich bibliotek. WiÄ™cej zdjęć projektu można znaleźć tu i ówdzie. […]

     


 

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