municipal public library

A combination of functions in a single facility. The interior of the building of the municipal public library in Mosina holds a library and a swimming pool. Its shape resembles a combine harvester (the housing estate lies in fields). Both its eye-catching shape and colour are to underline its uniqueness and make it impossible to confuse it with any of the other buildings. It is supposed to be a kind of culture ship, an island.As municipalities prepare long-term development plans, they survey their citizens, asking them what kind of facilities they think should be provided. The citizens most often express the need for social facilities, such as kindergartens, large self-service shops, or recreational facilities such as swimming pools or sports halls. A library does not appear on those wish lists, which is understandable considering another survey results which indicate that two out of three Poles did not read a single book during the last year. A building unlike any other facility. On new housing estates in the so-called city bedrooms no public utility buildings are erected – buildings which would serve the integration of the communities living there. Instead of them large-surface self-service shops are mainly built and it is around them that the
residents’ social life centres.New sports facilities enjoy increasing popularity: football fields, basketball courts, swimming pools, sports halls. They are new centres of the local social life and this is the reason why they are among the facilities most desirable for the citizens of towns and communes. Gold library
A modern building will not attract new users to a library, at least not in the long run. People interested in its novelty will probably go there only once. Therefore, in order to win regular users it would be much more effective to combine a library with another facility, e.g. a shop or a sports facility, indicated by the surveyed residents as necessary. For this reason we combine the facilities “desired” by the residents with a library, which always remains the basic element with other facilities added to it (examples of other facilities combined with a library are shown on the diagram). This will bring libraries closer and make them more attractive to a larger group of people. To put it another way, libraries „parasitize” on the facilities combined with them, they can be maintained from the revenues generated by such facilities (e.g. swimming pool fees, or fees for renting e.g. retail space), they attract and keep their users with an interesting offer, which would probably never be taken up by them.Investments in the town – a library is essential. The library – a glazed, one-storey building, open to the surroundings and the environment. The library – its layout (Japanese, renaissance, Tatra/Polish). Ground floor. On the diagram closed rooms: lecture room, administration room, toilets, and technical rooms, room for learning in silence are marked white. The division of the ground floor into the entrance part leading to the swimming pool (75 m2) and the library (360m2). Poles and books. In 2010 56% Poles did not read a single book. Attraction – functions that for some users may be more attractive than books at first. Mutual influence of the functions. Form. Ground floor – an open space which can be freely arranged and cheaply rearranged. The swimming pool with its technical support is „added” to the ground floor. Adding extra functions to the swimming pool: a slide, stands, an observation deck with a beach and a small swimming pool outside (roof), and a lower terrace for sunbathing. The superimposition of the façade, whose aim is to distinguish the facility through its colour and form, thanks to which it is to be a building well recognised in the town, is supposed to dominate the surroundings in terms of colour. In the library project in Mosina the distinctive features are colour blue and the futuristic shape of a combine harvester. The starting point for creating the architectural concept of a model municipal public library was the research carried out in 2010 by the Office for Readership Research of the National Library and the Public Opinion Research Centre TNS OBOP. The research shows that 56% Poles did not read a single book during the year. Thus we started to think about how to make the citizens and the authorities of the municipality (the latter will finance the project) interested with the idea of model public libraries in spite of the poor readership. In the surveys carried out among municipality citizens, which were used for planning long-term development strategies, the citizens rarely indicated the need to build a new library. The facilities that dominate their wish lists are public facilities such as kindergartens, large self-service shops, or recreational facilities such as sports halls or swimming pools. Therefore, in our concept we have combined the facilities „desired” by the citizens with a the library, which is the basic element with other facilities added to it (diagram). The library project was situated in Mosina, a town in Poznan district 22 kilometres from Poznan itself. Thanks to being relatively near the metropolis of Wielkopolska province it has
been developing dynamically for the past few years, especially due to large-scale property development investments. At first the town considered the offered library project with reluctance, because in the building of Mosina Cultural Centre in Dworcowa Street there is already a municipal library, which has functioned for over 60 years. However, the authorities expressed their interest in combining it with other facilities necessary for the municipality (a new town hall or a swimming pool). They indicated two parcels for the project, both in Strzelecka Street. The parcels in this street are ideal for the concept of the project as it is the so-called exit street, virtually on the border of Mosina and the village Krosinek. Around this street, by 2016 according to the municipal authorities and developers, housing estates consisting of detached and terraced houses for over 3.5 thousand residents will have been built (they are under construction now). Yet despite so many people coming to live there, the town does not plan any public facilities in those areas. So, as it is usually the case in such areas, the only buildings uniting the new community will be private self-service shops such as Lidl or Biedronka. A public library situated there and combined with an attractive facility such as a swimming pool would not only allow the integration (for activities and attractions for all age groups see the diagram) of the new community (a phenomenon typical of small towns, the so-called city bedrooms), but also make new social groups interested in books.


Archiprix International / Hunter Douglas Awards - April 2012