The building is a remembrance of the desert slot canyons of northern Arizona and monument valley, capturing the powerful and unique experience between the compressive stone walls and the ultimate release to the sky above. Ever-patient threads of water, sculpting and polishing the massive walls, cut these natural sandstone canyons over millennia. Harder stone and slow water sharply defines vertical slivers while softer stone gives way to wider crevasse. The library echoes this powerful natural sequence. An earthen and stone roof is thrust from the desert floor, taking with it the native grasses, shrub and stone texture. Organized about a central court, the building is entered through a “slot canyon” of steel and glass. Walls of weathered steel plate reflect the terra-cotta walls of stone as they lean overhead and fall away from the entry path and open to the sky above. The weathered steel walls of the building support an earthen and stone roof, planted with native vegetation and stone from the site. Two roof gardens will contain desert variety trees and groundcovers’, recalling the surface level vegetation as one descends into the canyon.
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