New Ravenswood school library, designed by BVN architecture up for prestigious architecture award
It has recently been announced that one of BVN architecture ’s recent projects, the library at Ravenswood School on Sydney’s north shore, is the only Australian project to be included in the education category of the World Architecture News (WAN) architecture awards.
The new library building is modern in every aspect, and it bears no resemblance to traditional library design. The library design caters to all students, as both wide open spaces suited for congregations of large groups and smaller, quiet spaces for studying or quiet discussion co-exist.
The most dominant feature of the library is undoubtedly a large timber stair known as ‘La Scala.’ The stair has many functions as it connects two levels of the library, operates as a grandstand that provides seating to watch movies or share a lecture, and it offers extensive views of the library entry and beyond.
Mr Bill Dowzer, BVN Principal explains the effect of the stair: ‘by raising the library onto the upper level, we created dramatic cantilevers under which are a number of different spaces protected from the elements where informal learning can take place.’
‘Meanwhile it leaves the library floating, with its light, white cladding above the school and incorporates a series of links that finally makes the circulation work in the school,’ he continues.
BVN Architecture have also included an adjoining cafe to further create a sense of community among students, teachers and parents.
The design of the library is not only aesthetically pleasing, it has been constructed using the latest environmental technology, ‘there is a double skin facade that creates a cavity that in winter is kept closed to retain heat and in summer opens automatically to release heat,’ said Mr Dowzer.
The library windows have also been constructed with an opening function, and they are positioned in a manner that creates cross ventilation so the library is cooled using natural resources. A back up air-conditioning system has also been installed for those hotter days.
The winner of the WAN Architecture Award in the education sector will be announced on the 17 April.