The existing Stockholm Library is a landmark in Stockholm designed by notable architect Gunnar Asplund. The library is located in a dense urban district in front of the Observatory Hill, a public park covered with greeneries and topped by the Observatory Museum. The design of the expansion is to create a structure that is modern and yet respectful to the existing library and the urban and natural surroundings, and an inviting community hub for studying, meeting and socializing.
The exterior of the library appears as a rectangular shaped 2 story box placed on top of a triangular shaped 4 story base. The height of the base matches the base of the existing library, the façade tilts back from Odengatan street towards the existing library, to create a public plaza connecting the two buildings, and to highlight and celebrate the existing library facade. The rectangular shaped structure siting on the top aligns with the city grid and cantilevers above the plaza below.
At the heart of the new building is a glass-roofed atrium that allows daylight to permeate all floors and facilitate natural ventilation. A cascading wooden staircase is located in the middle of the atrium, providing steps for casual studying and meeting, it also offers an opportunity for a slow processional walk up to the top of the Observatory Hill.
On the top floor of the library is a dramatic “living room”, a double height reading area surrounded by full height windows overlooking the existing Asplund library and the city view of Stockholm.
Location: Stockholm, Sweden
Area: 25,400 sq m