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Concursul pentru Biblioteca Central Helsinki

Biroul finlandez de arhitectur ALA Architects a ctigat competiia internaional pentru noua bibliotec public din Helsinki, cu un proiect inedit ce prezint o fuziune ntre dinamica sitului i funciunile specifice programului.

Lansat n ianuarie 2012, concursul cerea aplicanilor s propun o cldire atemporal, flexibil i eficient din punct de vedere energetic, care s fie amplasat. Organizatorii competiiei au apreciat proiectul ctigtor ca fiind o arhitectur memorabil, de nalt calitate, cu un concept relaxat i ndrzne, adugnd c propunerea confer premise excelente pentru dezvoltarea unui funcional complet nou pentru bibliotec i are potenialul de a deveni un simbol al oraului.

Biblioteca central va fi noul punct de atracie al impresionantei reele de biblioteci din Helsinki, amplasat n inima oraului, vis-a-vis de sediul Parlamentului Finlandez i alturi de alte cldiri reprezentative precum Centrul Cultural Muzical Helsinki, Casa Sanoma, Muzeul de Arta Contemporan Kiasma proiectat de Steven Hall, Finlandia Hall a lui Alvar Aalto i Gara Central, proiectat de Eliel Saarinen. Zona activitilor publice a fost amplasat la parter, de unde pot fi admirate suprafeele curbe din lemn, la ultimul etaj sunt slile de lectur care beneficiaz de linitea cuvenite, iar la nivelul median au fost amenajate mediateca i o saun. Cldirea beneficiaz de dou intrri: cea principal pe faada de vest, dinspre piaet, care duce n lobby, unde o scar elicoidal distribuie publicul spre etajele superioare, iar intrarea secundar este pe faada sudic i deservete fluxul dinspre gar, fiind dotat cu un lift ce traverseaz volumul din lemn de deasupra. Reprezentanii ALA Architects, cu sediul n Helsinki, intenioneaz s utilizeze materiale locale, precum zada siberian, la construcia bibliotecii programat pentru inaugurare n 2018. Cldirea de 16.000 mp, situat n inima oraului Helsinki, cuprinde aproape n ntregime spaii publice oferind o selecie vast de servicii. Aceasta va fi centrul impresionantei reele de biblioteci a oraului. n propunerea ctigtoare funciunile sunt mprite n 3 zone diferite: nivelul inferior este cel mai activ, cu zone de interes public, pentru socializare, nivelul superior este unul linitit, iar cel median cuprinde mediateca i o saun. Volumetria este conceput n forma unei boli care invit publicul att n spaiul de sub, ct i deasupra i n interior. Piaeta din fa continu i la interior, funzionnd cu zone de socializare i spaii de odihn. Parterul este un spaiu amplu i flexibil, updatat fecvent, potrivit pentru vizite i plimbri. Astfel, cota zero va fi o zon activ cu spaii publice vizibile i atractive pentru vizitatori.

Atmosfera linitit, specific bibliotecii, se gsete la ultimul nivel. Aceasta va fi un spaiu calm pentru lectur i meditaie, plutind deasupra centrului de ora aglomerat, o zon protejat, cu priveliti ncnttoare asupra oraului i parcului din apropiere. Aceste dou spaii complementare sunt definite volumul arcuit din lemn, fiind amplasate deasupra i sub acesta, iar funciunile din cadrul volumului vor fi mai intime.

Volumul arcuit care acoper parterul, spaiile fluide ale nivelului median, precum i pardoseala denivelat de la ultimul etaj sunt definite de suprafeele din lemn care au att rol funcional ct i estetic. Biblioteca va avea trei puncte de acces pentru public: unul pe faada sudic ce va deservi fluxul dinspre Gara Central, un acces protejat pe latura de vest, spre piaet i un acces secundar spre nord -est. Nivelurile superioare pot fi accesate dinspre sud prin intermediul unui lift care traverseaz volumul din lemn sau prin holul de acc es principal, pe o scar elicoidal. Fiecare etaj va fi un punct de atracie n sine i un spaiu civic reprezentativ al oraului Helsinki. Pe lng funciunea de bibliotec, ultimul etaj va fi totodat i un spaiu polivalent modern, flexibil i deschis p entru o multitudine de funciuni. Al doilea nivel pune la dispoziie spaii pentru activiti practice, workshop -uri de muzic i multimedia, o mediatec amenajat cu toate instrumentele contemporane i o saun public. La parter vor fi, de asemenea, o sal polivalent, un restaurant i un cinema. Cldirea va fi eficient din punct de vedere energetic, construit cu materiale locale i innd cont de condiiile climatice din zon. Faada din lemn va fi alctuit din elemente prefabricate i finisate la faa locului. Se vor folosi plci groase de 3 cm din lemn de zad siberian de cea mai bun calitate, iar aspectul faadei se va modifica n timp ntr-o nuan mai nchis dect cea iniial.

ALA Architects wins Helsinki Library competition Finnish studio ALA Architects has won the international competition to design a new public library in Helsinki with plans that involve a mass of twisted timber (+ slideshow). Launched in January 2012, the competition asked applicants to come up with a timeless, flexible and energyefficient building to sit opposite the Finnish Parliament building in the Tlnlahti area of the city. ALA Architects' response is for a three-storey structure comprising a contorted timber volume. Public activities and group study areas will occupy an active ground floor beneath the curving wooden surfaces, while a traditionally quiet reading room will be located above and a contemporary media facility and public sauna will be housed in the middle. Two main entrances will provide access to the building. A public plaza in front of the western facade is to lead into a main lobby, where a staircase will spiral up to the floors above, while a second entrance will face the railway station to the south and offer an escalator that penetrates the wooden volume overhead. "The architecture of the proposal is of a very high quality, executed with relaxed, broad strokes, and memorable," commented the competition organisers.

They added: "The proposal provides excellent premises for the development of a completely new functional concept for the library. The building has a unique appeal and the prerequisites to become the new symbolic building which Helsinki residents, library users, as well as the staff will readily adopt as their own." ALA Architects, who is also based in Helsinki, plans to use local materials such as Siberian larch to construct the Helsinki Central Library and it is scheduled to open in 2018. ALA Architects wins Helsinki Central Library competition . The 16,000 square metre library building in the heart of Helsinki will consist almost entirely of public spaces and will offer a wide selection of services. It will serve as the new central point for the city's impressive public library network. The Central Library is slated to open in 2018. The winning entry is based on the idea of dividing the functions of the library into three distinctive levels: an active ground floor, a calm upper floor, and an enclosed in-between volume containing the more specific functions. This concept has been developed into an arching form that invites people to utilise the spaces and services underneath, inside and on top of it. The resulting building will be an inspiring and highly functional addition to the urban life of Helsinki and the nationally significant Tlnlahti area. ALA is one of the leading Nordic architecture firms. The office has previously completed the Kilden Performing Arts Centre in Kristiansand, Norway, and is currently working on a number of large public projects in Finland including two theaters, five subway stations, and a passenger ferry hub. Knns has been designed by ALA partners Juho Grnholm, Antti Nousjoki, Janne Tersvirta and Samuli Woolston together with the ALA project team, assisted by the engineering experts at Arup. Description of the winning entry Knns Knns grows from the dynamic between the site and the goals of the library program. The interplay between the building's three individual floors is the key concept of the entry. The public plaza in front of the building will continue inside, merging with a catalogue of meeting and experience features. The ground floor will be a robust, busy and frequently updated space suitable for quick visits and walkthroughs. The active, zero-threshold public spaces will be visible, attractive, understandable and welcoming to all visitors. The traditional, serene library atmosphere can be found on the top floor. This will be a calm area for contemplation, floating above the busy central Helsinki. It will offer unobstructed, majestic views to the surrounding park and cityscape.These two contrasting spaces that perfectly complement each other are created by an arching wooden volume. The spaces inside the volume will be enclosed and more intimate. The wooden volume is stretched vertically to create connections to the open main floors below and above. Soft, curved shapes will be present all around the building. The curved ceiling covering the ground floor, the intensive flowing spaces on the middle level, as well as the curving floor surface of the top floor are all defined in the timber-clad mass, which is as functional as it is expressive.

There will be three public entrance points in the building: one in the south for the main pedestrian flow from the direction of the Central Railway Station, one next to the public plaza to the west of the building shielded by an overhanging canopy, as well as a secondary one in the northeastern corner. The top floor can be reached from the southern entrance by an escalator that penetrates the wooden volume, or from the main lobby via a spiraling double-helix stair. Each floor will be a destination in its own right and a new exciting civic space in the heart of Helsinki. While being a traditional library space, the top floor will also act as a modern, open, flexible platform for a multitude of functions. The middle floor will offer opportunities for learning-by-doing in an environment optimised for contemporary media and latest tools. It will contain workshop spaces for music and multimedia, as well as a public sauna. A multipurpose hall, a restaurant and a cinema will be located on ground floor. The library's facilities will offer services, as well as places to meet, to discuss, and to present ideas. The library building will be extremely energy efficient. It will be constructed using local materials and with local climate conditions in mind. Some of the main load-bearing components will be made of timber. The wooden faade will be built from pre-assembled elements finished on-site. 30 millimetre thick Finnish first grade Siberian Larch wood, shaped with a parametric 3D design and manufacturing process in order to achieve a perfect execution of the desired geometry, will be used for the cladding. The appearance of the faade will develop over the years towards a deeper, richer version of its initial hue. The design of the faade is intrinsic to the passive design approach adopted by the project team. Detailed analysis of the faade performance informs the environmental solutions and has allowed the team to minimise any systems required, which in turn facilitates the highly flexible architectural solution. Helsinki Central Library will serve as the new center point for Helsinki's impressive public library network. It will be located in the very heart of Helsinki, in the Tlnlahti area, opposite the Finnish Parliament building. As its neighbors it will have some of the city's most important public buildings; the Helsinki Music Centre, the Sanoma House, the Kiasma Museum of Contemporary Art designed by Steven Holl, Alvar Aalto's Finlandia Hall, and the Central Railway Station by Eliel Saarinen, as well as several new office and residential buildings still partially under construction on the site of a former railway yard.

The goal of the competition has been to find a timeless and energy-efficient design solution that responds to the challenges set by the location. The library building should complement and adjust to the urban fabric of the Tlnlahti area. The building is to express the operational concepts of a library in a way that offers a technically and spatially flexible framework for cutting-edge, adaptable library operations, now and in the future. It will reflect the technical and cultural changes taking place in the society, particularly evident in the media world. Library operations are statutory in Finland. Basic library services are free of charge and freely available to everyone. The new 16,000 square metre (approx. 172,000 square foot) library building will consist almost entirely of public spaces. The administrative and storage functions of Helsinki Public Library will remain at the main library

in Pasila. In terms of services offered, the new library will be the largest public library in the Helsinki metropolitan area, and will most certainly become the metropolitan area's most popular spot for returns and reservations. It has been estimated that the library will attract 5,000 visitors per day and 1.5 million visitors per year. The new library will be at the forefront of the renewal of the city's library services. In addition to the basic operations, there will be a wide range of services available inside the building, as well as an abundance of lounge spaces and auxiliary services that support the operations. The library will enliven and diversify the new urban environment created in the Tlnlahti area. It will offer activities and experiences for all ages. There will be plenty of spaces that enable people to spend time together, free of charge. The role of the clients will evolve from passive media users to active agents, participants and content producers. As a non-commercial open public space, the new Helsinki Central Library will act as a common living room and work space.