The Stockholm City Library
The project intention is that the new library undertakes the symbolic role of “educational machine”. To the more specific function of learning and experiencing is associated the one of catalyst of cultural stimuli, aimed to users that we could define urban tourists. The image that reverberates is a spectrum in which even the most casual users get in contact, at the beginning maybe only visually, with the entire range of the activities of the library. The aim is that this first contact is able to arouse curiosity and maybe knowledge. The organization by subject areas (horizontal) crosses a vertical stratification that detects different grades of fruition. In a few words: a light use, related to the park and to the leisure areas; a use destined to simple consultation or personal study; and finally a specialized use. Two setting figures emerge from the project: - vision simultaneity: it’s a symbolic character that represents the possibility for all the functions to be visible and perceptible from everywhere in the spectrum of the new library; - space separation: technical corollary of the point above, it represents the need of all the different areas to be controlled according to acoustic, thermic and environmental needs. It means separate areas but simultaneously perceptible from every position in the complex.
RADIAL FLOW: On LEVEL1 the new library fills the whole area and here are positioned all the functions related to “culture” and logistic management of the library. In the centre there is the general reference, connected to the subject areas through a more specialized reference that introduces the users to the sections. We can perceive a gradual development of the uses and functions from the central nucleus to the peripheral areas. It is also foreseen a link with the Asplund building to permit the flow of users and books in the whole spectrum.
CROSS FLOW: On LEVEL2 we can see a stricture in the “culture” part of the library in order to let the public and leisure fruition occupy more space. Therefore at this level the development of the library is detected just through the stairs and elevators blocks. This level appears to be totally open and integrated with the surrounding urban life. The activities detected at this level may have an independent development or be associated with the ones of the new library.
CIRCULAR FLOW: The following levels again occupy the entire area, which is divided into different subject areas (whose development instead follows a vertical way starting from LEVEL1). The subject areas are articulated on various floors, all connected through stairs/elevators and a circular ramp which runs on different levels and defines a unique library-space. This system permits the simultaneity of the vision and the required separation of the space.