new halifax central library by schmidt hammer lassen opens in canada
 
new halifax central library by schmidt hammer lassen opens in canada
dec 11, 2014

new halifax central library by schmidt hammer lassen opens in canada

new halifax central library by schmidt hammer lassen opens in canada
photo by adam mørk
all images courtesy of schmidt hammer lassen architects

 

 

 

danish firm schmidt hammer lassen has completed nova scotia’s ‘new halifax central library‘, which has been conceived as an open and accessible cultural hub. working alongside local firm fowler bauld & mitchell, the institution is sited on a prominent location at the heart of halifax’s downtown.

 

the building’s exterior appears as four stacked rectangular volumes that are twisted horizontally to relate to the two diagonal directions that are dominant in the otherwise orthogonal city grid. furthermore, the structure is seen as a catalyst for the regeneration of the region and is the product of an extensive co-creation process that involved public consultations and workshops.

schmidt hammer lassen new halifax central library canada designboom
photo by adam mørk

 

 

 

internally, the library reflects the diversity of the exterior with a network of stairs and bridges that traverse the central atrium. this brightly lit volume gives an overview of the site’s facilities, including a 300-seat performance space, two cafés, music studios and a dedicated area for adult literacy classes. the entire second floor is dedicated to children and young adults, with specific zones designed for each age group – ranging from toddlers to teens.

schmidt hammer lassen new halifax central library canada designboom
photo by adam mørk

 

 

 

‘halifax is a city whose maritime heritage calls for attention when designing a new public building’, explains founding partner morten schmidt of schmidt hammer lassen architects. ‘therefore, the historical axis between the halifax citadel and the halifax harbour, crossing right through the library site, is reflected in the orientation of the fifth floor of the building containing the halifax living room hereby providing not only a unique view but also an understanding of the city’s historical heritage’.

schmidt hammer lassen new halifax central library canada designboom
photo by adam mørk

 

 

 

‘the new halifax central library is a modern, hybrid library’, adds partner chris hardie from schmidt hammer lassen. ‘it combines the best of a traditional library with new and innovative programs and facilities. by designing a library that is adaptable we embrace multiple functions to ensure that the library will meet the needs of the halifax community into the future. people should see this building not only as a library but as a free public space in the heart of the city.’

schmidt hammer lassen new halifax central library canada designboom
photo by adam mørk

schmidt hammer lassen new halifax central library canada designboom
photo by adam mørk

schmidt hammer lassen new halifax central library canada designboom
photo by adam mørk

schmidt hammer lassen new halifax central library canada designboom
photo by adam mørk

schmidt hammer lassen new halifax central library canada designboom
photo by adam mørk

schmidt hammer lassen new halifax central library canada designboom
photo by adam mørk

 

 

project info:

 

architect team: schmidt hammer lassen architects (design architect), fowler bauld & mitchell (prime consultant architect)
client: halifax regional municipality, halifax public libraries
area: 15,000 sqm
budget: €33 million CAD (excl. VAT)
construction period: 2011-2014
photography: adam mørk

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