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Xiadi Paddy Field Bookstore of Librairie Avant-Garde / TAO

Xiadi Paddy Field Bookstore of Librairie Avant-Garde / TAO

aerial view. Image © Yuxing Zhuo roof mazzanine platform and the double sloped roof structure. Image © Hao Chen roof mazzanine platform and the double sloped roof structure. Image © Hao Chen 2F reading area. Image © Hao Chen + 49

Ningde, China
  • Principal Architect: Li Hua
  • Design Team: Li Hua, Ruoxin Li, Dongyuan Zhai, Xiangju Cheng
  • Structural Engineer: Zhigang Ma, Suiping Zhang
  • Mep Engineer: Jianjun Lv, Kcalin Design Group-Xin Li, Zirui Zhao, Wei Li
  • Construction Team: Yijiu Zhuo, Jialiang Zheng, Zhenqin Gan, Debu Zheng, Zhongchun Zheng, Delv Zheng and other local builders
  • Client: Librairie Avant-Garde
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aerial view. Image © Yuxing Zhuo
aerial view. Image © Yuxing Zhuo

Text description provided by the architects. Xiadi Paddy Field Bookstore of Librairie Avant-Garde is located in the north side of Xiadi Village, Pingnan, Fujian, surrounded by paddy fields. The building was a long-abandoned local residence, with three rammed earth walls that remained intact and a few dilapidated courtyard walls at the time the architect arrived.

aerial view. Image © Yuxing Zhuo
aerial view. Image © Yuxing Zhuo

Most part of the new construction is hidden inside the remnants of the old house and so it seems as if nothing has happened from the outside, demonstrating great respect for the history of the local area and the overall natural landscape of the village. The remnants serve as a container that wraps around the new construction, which is made of concrete and steel, forming a dialogue between the contemporary and the traditional.

1:25 model
1:25 model

Internally, two kinked concrete walls form the main structure of the building, while two cantilevered floor slabs spread throughout the space and connect with the rammed earth walls at the corners, providing structural stability. Edges of the floor slabs are detached from the rammed earth wall to let light in through the skylight.

1F reading area. Image © Hao Chen
1F reading area. Image © Hao Chen
2F reading area. Image © Hao Chen
2F reading area. Image © Hao Chen
rammed earth wall under the light and shadow. Image © Hao Chen
rammed earth wall under the light and shadow. Image © Hao Chen

An enclosed and introverted book-display area is formed between the new concrete structure and the rammed earth walls. A theatre space, which is the largest internal space in the building, is defined between the two book-display walls, becoming an unexpected surprise for the visitors after experiencing the cramped spaces up front.

gathering space. Image © Hao Chen
gathering space. Image © Hao Chen
model_longitudinal section
model_longitudinal section
gathering space. Image © Hao Chen
gathering space. Image © Hao Chen

An extroverted café space is situated in the cantilevered part at the west end, which is the only overflow part from the remnant wall envelope, providing visitors with an unparalleled view of the entire village and the paddy fields.

cafe. Image © Hao Chen
cafe. Image © Hao Chen
section sketch. Image © Li Hua
section sketch. Image © Li Hua
cafe. Image © Hao Chen
cafe. Image © Hao Chen

At the centre of the building, a steel column penetrates through the concrete structure and supports an umbrella-shaped roof on top of it. The position and geometric form of the roof structure indicate the original roof typology of the old house. The roof provides visitors with a sheltered space and a high point to enjoy a panoramic view of the surrounding landscape, like a pavilion rising from the field.

2F central space. Image © Hao Chen
2F central space. Image © Hao Chen
umbrella shaped roof structure. Image © Hao Chen
umbrella shaped roof structure. Image © Hao Chen
roof mazzanine platform and the double sloped roof structure. Image © Hao Chen
roof mazzanine platform and the double sloped roof structure. Image © Hao Chen

The umbrella-shaped structure is cantilevered through the primary beam, and the loads are transferred to the only single steel column, bringing the gravitational loads down to the centroid of the building. The steel channels at the four corners hold the roof structure in place for assuring lateral stability, and also allowing rainwater to flow back to the centre through the inward-sloping concrete roof slab, achieving another form of Si Shui Gui Tang.

roof mazzanine platform and the double sloped roof structure. Image © Hao Chen
roof mazzanine platform and the double sloped roof structure. Image © Hao Chen
roof mazzanine platform and the double sloped roof structure. Image © Hao Chen
roof mazzanine platform and the double sloped roof structure. Image © Hao Chen
roof mazzanine platform. Image © Hao Chen
roof mazzanine platform. Image © Hao Chen

Light enters through the gap between the concrete slabs and the rammed earth walls from top, and fully depicts the rustication of the rammed earth walls at some point. Local carbonized pine from Pingnan is used for the concrete formworks, creating a rough yet delicate texture and forming a dialogue between new construction and remnants with the historic rammed earth walls.

the bookstore in the paddy field. Image © Hao Chen
the bookstore in the paddy field. Image © Hao Chen

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Project location

Address: Xiadi Village, Pingnan, Fujian, China

Location to be used only as a reference. It could indicate city/country but not exact address.
About this office
Cite: "Xiadi Paddy Field Bookstore of Librairie Avant-Garde / TAO" 15 Jan 2020. ArchDaily. Accessed . <https://www.archdaily.com/931766/xiadi-paddy-field-bookstore-of-librairie-avant-garde-tao-trace-architecture-office/> ISSN 0719-8884
overall view. Image © Hao Chen

先锋厦地水田书店 / 迹·建筑事务所

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