Taiwanese practice Bio-architecture Formosana (BAF) recently won first place in the design competition for the new Southern Branch and digital preservation center for Taiwan's National Central Library and National Repository Library, located in the Xinying District in Tainan. With a total area of 57,100 m2, the Southern Branch will provide upgraded services for the public and is set to be the largest national library in southern Taiwan. Additionally, the National Repository digital preservation center will serve as a major resource for the country's valuable academic digital materials.
Nine tenders were submitted during the competition stage this past summer. Following evaluations, the jury ranked the top five teams in the following order:
First place - Bio-architecture Formosana
Second place - Ricky Liu & Associates Architects+Planners
Third place - StudioBase Architects, Design Group & Construction
Fourth place - Joe Shih Architects & Associates
Fifth place - Chien Architects & Associates
Get a glimpse of the first place proposal below.
Designed in collaboration with Carlo Ratti Associati, BAF's concept for the library focuses on creating a more open, interactive learning environment. All of the building's main spaces — the library, museum, and repository — are linked through a main axis that connects the north-south sides of the site, BAF says.
The main lobby, referred to as the “salon”, will be an interactive flexible space for educational activities and other events. In response to the hot, humid climate, they also designed “The Agora” under the solar canopy to provide shade and harness energy. Overlooking a lush landscape, the space can be used by the public all day, as well as for semi-outdoor events.
The museum “begins in the public main axis showcasing the Book-bot ASRS (automated storage and retrieval system), while slowly entering into the museum quarter surrounded by trees,” BAF describes. The museum loop includes a “behind-the-scenes” look into the restoration, preservation, and digitalization of the books.
Location: Xinying, Tainan
Area: 57,100 m2
Project Year: 2018-
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