Does Snøhetta’s design for a new library at Temple University spell the end of books?

Architecture, East, News, Newsletter
Tuesday, January 26, 2016
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(Courtesy Snøhetta)

(Courtesy Snøhetta)

Libraries are temples for books, though Snøhetta’s plan for a new library at Temple University in Philadelphia argues that you can have one without the other. The design of the Temple University Library is influenced by the academies of ancient Greece, which privileged social spaces for discourse over the storage and management of written materials.

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KSP Jurgen Engel Architekten to Design New Shenzhen Art Museum

International
Tuesday, December 29, 2015
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(Courtesy KSP Jurgen Engel Architekten)

(Courtesy KSP Jurgen Engel Architekten)

German studio KSP Jurgen Engel Architekten was selected last month in an international competition to design the new Shenzhen Art Museum and Library complex. The winning scheme was chosen over submissions by world-renowned firms including OMA, Mecanoo and Steven Holl.

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Obama Foundation announces seven offices to submit proposals for presidential library

Architecture, Midwest, News
Monday, December 21, 2015
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Poetry Foundation, Chicago, John Ronan Architects. (Steve Hall/Hedrich Blessing)

The Poetry Foundation, Chicago, by perspective presidential library designers John Ronan Architects. (Steve Hall/Hedrich Blessing)

The Barack Obama Foundation has announced the seven offices from which it is requesting proposals for the design of the Obama Presidential Library in Chicago.

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Read all about it: Obama Presidential Library reportedly headed for Chicago

A rendering of Garfield Boulevard, part of the University of Chicago's proposal for the Barack Obama Presidential Library. (Skidmore, Owings & Merrill, The University of Chicago)

A rendering of Garfield Boulevard, part of the University of Chicago’s proposal for the Barack Obama Presidential Library. (Skidmore, Owings & Merrill, The University of Chicago)

The Associated Press has reported that Barack Obama‘s presidential library will be in his adopted hometown of Chicago. After months of speculation that the 44th President of the United States might site his legacy project in New York City—where he attended Columbia University—or his birth city of Honolulu, Hawaii, multiple unnamed sources cited by the AP and other publications say Obama and his nonprofit foundation have settled on Chicago, where he forged his political career.

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Maya Lin and Shepley Bulfinch selected to revamp Neilson Library at Smith College

Architecture, Development, East
Friday, April 10, 2015
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Smith College's Neilson Library. (Patrick Giblin / Flickr)

Smith College’s Neilson Library. (Patrick Giblin / Flickr)

Maya Lin and the national design firm Shepley Bulfinch have been tapped to reimagine Smith College’s 106-year-old Neilson Library.

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“Carousel of Light” Bookstore in Bucharest Occupies Breathtaking 19th-Century Bank Building

(Courtesy Square One)

(Courtesy Square One)

Forget, albeit momentarily, the speculated death of the print product. Romanian bookstore chain Carturesti has poured millions of dollars into the restoration of a 19th-century former bank building to house its second-largest retail outlet.

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Snøhetta, Allied Works, and others propose dramatic schemes for Obama library In Hawaii

Architecture, Unveiled, West
Thursday, January 8, 2015
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View from the roof of the proposed center. (Luxigon, Architect & Landscape Architect: Snøhetta and WCITARCHITECTURE)

Not to be outdone by proposals in Chicago and New York, Snøhetta and WCITARCHITECTURE have thrown their hats into the ring for the Obama Presidential Library, sketching a unique building in the President’s home state of Hawaii. If selected, their Barack Obama Presidential Center, affiliated with the University of Hawaii in Honolulu, would take its cues from the forms of both a coral reef and the area’s undulating topography.

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University of Chicago releases details on Obama Library proposal

A rendering of South Stony Island Avenue, part of the University of Chicago's proposal for the Barack Obama Presidential Library. (Skidmore, Owings & Merrill, The University of Chicago)

A rendering of South Stony Island Avenue, part of the University of Chicago’s proposal for the Barack Obama Presidential Library. (Skidmore, Owings & Merrill, The University of Chicago)

While speculation around the Barack Obama Presidential Library continues to swirl, plans for one of the project’s four potential sites just became a bit clearer. The University of Chicago, where the President taught law, made public this week new renderings and details of their bid for the nation’s 14th such library, trotting out sunny images that show the economic development potential of investment in the South Side areas surrounding Washington Park.

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Gould Evans Rewraps Kansas Library

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Rather than adding on to one end of the existing structure, Gould Evans wrapped a new reading room and terra cotta facade around the old Lawrence Public Library. (Courtesy Gould Evans)

Rather than adding on to one end of the existing structure, Gould Evans wrapped a new reading room and terra cotta facade around the old Lawrence Public Library. (Courtesy Gould Evans)

Terra cotta rain screen transforms brutalist eyesore into energy-efficient community space.

Considered an aesthetic and functional failure almost since its construction in 1974, the old public library in Lawrence, Kansas, was overdue for a renovation four decades later. Gould Evans‘ challenge was to transform the low-slung brutalist behemoth, a poor environmental performer lacking both adequate daylighting and a sense of connection to the community, into an asset. “The desire was to try to come up with a building that basically reinvented the library for the community,” said vice president Sean Zaudke. Rather than tacking an addition on to one end of the existing structure, the architects elected to wrap a 20,000-square-foot reading room and open stacks area around the old facade. In so doing, they altered the exterior for the better, swapping bare concrete for an earth-hued terra cotta rain screen punctuated by plentiful glazing. They also significantly enhanced the library’s environmental performance, with early estimates suggesting that the new Lawrence Public Library will see a 50 percent reduction in energy usage despite a 50 percent increase in square footage.

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Minneapolis plans the country’s most climate resilient neighborhood

Minneapolis' 4th Street looking east from a location just east of 29th Ave., in a sketch of climate resilient neighborhood Prospect Park 2020. (Prospect Park 2020)

A collection of grain silos and railroad tracks next to the University of Minnesota‘s Minneapolis campus is set to become a “living laboratory” for climate resilience, according to its designers and allies in city and regional government.

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Eavesdrop> Obama Library Showdown

Architecture, Eavesdroplet, Midwest
Monday, November 17, 2014
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The Chicago skyline. (Photo by Tim Rogers / Flickr; Montage by AN)

The Chicago skyline. (Photo by Tim Rogers / Flickr; Montage by AN)

And then there were four. The committee in charge of picking a site for President Barack Obama’s presidential library and museum narrowed the playing field to four illustrious institutions of higher learning, with two in Chicago. The University of Chicago, University of Illinois at Chicago, Columbia University, and the University of Hawaii have until December 11 to submit their bids, just in time to kick back and sip some eggnog while the president gears up for his last two years in office.

Archtober Building of the Day #11> Queens’ Glen Oaks Branch Library

Architecture, East
Tuesday, October 14, 2014
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(Courtesy AIANY)

Archtober Building of the Day #11
Glen Oaks Branch Library
256-04 Union Turnpike, Queens
Marble Fairbanks

The goal of libraries is to provide communities with access to resources, said Karen Fairbanks, founding partner of Marble Fairbanks. Before Fairbanks and a large team of fellow architects, landscape architects, and engineers designed the new Glen Oaks Branch Library, community members were yearning for a facility that could provide more resources that better serve their needs.

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