EXTENSION OF THE LIBRARY BUILDING OF THE UNIVERSITY OF RETHYMNON - RETHYMNO, CRETE 2008 - 2010
CLIENT: UNIVERSITY OF CRETE
The main design challenge of the project responds to the need for a modern extension for the existing Library of the University of Rethymnon, a building with strong morphological features, designed by the architect A. Noukakis. The new design aims not to disrupt the architectural character of the original building, its functionality, the immediate surrounding landscape area, the natural lighting as well as the unique perspective view to the city of Rethymnon.
In line with the above, the project design of the extension of the Library, undertaken by Thymio Papayannis and Associ-ates Inc., was based on the idea that the building is a landscape formation detached from the existing Library building - with a reduced visual impact. The design concept utlizes the existing slope in the northeast side of the surroundings as well as the northern natural lighting for the development of the reading rooms. With this treatment the existing Library building is not affected morphologically, and at the same time the functional and aesthetic elements of the landscape surrounding area are emphasized.
The footprint of the plan of the new Library resulted from the radial alignment of the existing building, as a reference and a link to it, as well as from the limits of the existing slope that demarcated the excavation. The circular interior patio accentuates this reference, while providing natural lighting in the interior of the extension of the Library. An elevated glass bridge formed at the entrance level of the existing library building connects the existing building with this new landscape formation through a vertical movement tower. The roof of the new extension building (roof garden) is formed by softscape green zones planted with low and medium height local plants and hardscape zones of hard materials, such as stabilized soil and fairface concrete slabs, arbitrarily arranged in a free curved pattern. The roof garden constitutes a vital part of the landscape surroundings of the complex of the two buildings, contributing also to the bioclimatic character of the new extension building.
Thymio Papayannis and Associates Inc.
TEAM E-M Consulting Engineers Ltd