Location: Varna, Bulgaria
Type: International Design Competition
Awards: Honourable Mention, Competition
This competition provides an opportunity to reimagine the library in this context. A garden library.
A library full of life, light and activity. Inspired by the generous, public nature of the Primorski, Varna City Library is envisioned as a series of stacked garden terraces, each with a unique layout and landscaped character. The levels ascend to a sculpture garden and public terrace with simultaneous views across the city to the mountains and the Black Sea. As the largest landscaped park in the Balkans, the Primorski offers expansive public amenity for the city, whilst powerfully claiming the waterfront for recreation and healthy enjoyment. The proposed library is an extension of this idea; claiming the site for the enjoyment of the public as an extended home for the city’s people. A clear distinction between each floor create a sense of legibility for users and allows each floor to evolve as use and demand changes. This is a library for the future. A central void, elegantly pierces through each terrace, bringing light and views into the heart of the library whilst also acting as a thermal chimney to ventilate the building. Most importantly, the playful, overlapping voids create a unique place to study, read and observe library life. The ground floor is an event hub, connecting the library with the activity of the street and adjacent town hall and bringing the landscape inside. The ground plane is designed as a highly inviting and open space with every side of the library activated with public programs including exhibitions, conferences, public program rooms, café and a generous public foyer.