The library is located at an intersection of multiple urban layers. Each periphery is facing different conditions. To the south, the golf course and ocean offer magnificent views. To the north there are an area of a dense community of high-rise apartments. And to the east, this is the interface between the site and city.
In the design process, we thought of the prototypes of “Hanok” and “Seowon” in Korea. The design also took the inspiration from the “living and studying under one roof” scenario in oriental architecture.
The volume can be seen as a direct response to the understandings of the urban context. The library was shaped in a radiative volume, composed of three elongated “fingers”, inviting city, landscape, and community. Its volume indicated our aim to integrate it harmoniously in the surrounding environment. We also introduced a semi-open space at the center. The space can be accessed from all directions, working as shortcuts, and used for multiple purposes.
The interior of the library can be defined as a “continuous landscape”. The reading rooms have been replaced by “flow space”. The public programs were kept open and flexible, articulated by a series of stepped platforms. In such way, openness, transparency, interdisciplinary interactions are greatly encouraged.
To find an architectural element, to balance traditional and modern. The two-sided pitched roof was used as a visual element and to integrate. The inclination was carefully calculated. It carefully balances an iconic appearance with a humble gesture to immediate surroundings. Walking afar, it presents a modern and simple appearance, while walking closely below the roof canopy, you will be embraced in an atmosphere of traditional “Seowon”, where you can sit below the eaves, appreciating the nature afar, and pondering the universe beyond.