Seeking to improve their outdated and overcrowded department library, the intention for the design of the Law school library aims at housing their growing book collection and creating a central focus for the school. After numerous studies and surveys indicated that students and faculties in Tsinghua hunger for open and easy-communication space, Zhubo based their concept on a people-oriented idea instead of a formalistic one. At the same time, they hoped for an eye-catching library that enlivens the campus, creating a destination that attracts both students and teachers. More images and architects’ description after the break.
The competition for the law library is held to celebrate the 100th anniversary of Tsinghua University, which is one of the oldest and best universities in China since 1910s. They demand new buildings situated on existent buildings and look forward to new, special ones. The B site of the competition, which is the one we chose, is located at the heart of the campus and connects the old and new campus areas. The new project will shape public space and create new connections across the urban road, the Economics & Management Department, and the Nano center and Microelectronics Institute.
This project includes three buildings—University public building，lecture theater of Economics & Management Department and Library for the Law Department. These three buildings are sited separately forming a rectangular public courtyard in the middle used as a gathering space and an open gallery. People can easily get into the site from different access points. The library’s main entrance faces to the northwest due to pedestrian flow. As a result, pedestrians，automobile and bicycle flows are not interrupted by each other.
According to having an open and flowing library area,housing multiple functions and allowing for the greatest amount of public space on site while the plan is compact，we separated spaces perpendicularly. The project is separated into an open area, semi-open area (Student of Law only), and privacy area(faculty only) according to the special identity. Open space in the middle which is used as the library area is zigzag design leaning to the top .It is designed to be flowing promenades flooded with light from the glass curtain wall and glass roof. The stair of the library space effectively uses natural sunlight from the south to imply the meaning “Stair of Truth”.
Slab office buildings run parallel on top of the library and enclose a series of roof courtyards that have better natural ventilation and light. At the same time, planning of the series of the office building imitates the most important lecture theater in Tsinghua campus-H-shaped Hall.
The library houses the cafeteria，gallery，media class rooms，library area and office area. Students can get in the cafeteria, gallery and classrooms easily from each side of the façade on ground floor while hardly reaching researchers’ offices which can ensure the quiet work environment. The main entrance brings people to the lobby reception and from there to a large staircase which can get to every floor. In the main void space, people can easily notice the suspending moot court which hangs upon the lobby. Meanwhile, the suspending moot court connects the teacher office area and student activity area.
The materials of the façades are selected white roughening granite and low-E insulating glass to give the exterior a subtle sparkle and glow without being overly shiny to imply an elegant and graceful Law Department. The suspending moot court used mirrors stainless steel plates for attracting users which implies meaning in law students’ career in how they should introspect and regulate themselves constantly. Architects: Zhubo Architectural & Engineering Design Co. Location: Beijing, China Project Team: Dadan Li, Yiming Ren, Qing Yang, Wenjie Wang, Guoliang Ding, Xiaoqi Guo Owner: Tsinghua University, Beijing Project Area: 23,800 sq.m (site area); 68,232 sq.m (building area) Project Year: 2011