LocationRedcliffs, Christchurch, New Zealand
Architect in ChargeGreg Young, ANZIA
Other ParticipantsChristchurch City Council, City Care Property, Aurecon, Geoconsult
Text description provided by the architects. The Redcliffs Village Library is a volunteer library run by the community, in a building that is owned by the Christchurch City Council. The rebuild of the earthquake damaged building was driven by the community, and we worked very closely with them, as well as meeting the Christchurch City Council’s requirements for the sustainability of the new building.
The community needed an affordable library building that also provided space for community meetings.
The City Council required the building to be low maintenance and efficient.
The architecture of the building is full of metaphors associated with the library and its contents
-The roofing and cladding represents the dust cover of a book, with the spine and edge reflected in the curved flashings.
-The white ends of the building represent the pages of a book.
-The clear strip on the Main Road elevation has two purposes:
- It gives more transparency than the semi-opaque polycarbonate, telegraphing a new visitors arrival as they move past it
- It also represents the gap in the pages of a book, if the book was stood up on its edge in a similar way to the form of the building
-The polycarbonate street gable is back-lit to glow at night time, in a similar way to a lighthouse. In this sense, the lighthouse symbolizes:
- Guidance, and the ability to weather a storm
- A beacon of civilisation and education
-The reception counter is designed to represent books between two book ends.