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Architecture: Kiama Library

October 13, 2010

An existing library is remodelled by Fulton Trotter Architects to provide more space and specialised zones for children and adults.

Kiama Library had existed in an old converted squash court centre since 1989. It had outgrown this facility and lacked of sense of quality civic space. After reviewing options of moving to a new site, Council decided to maintain its presence in the central business district of Kiama and extend and remodel the existing facility. The library needed to double in size and provide appropriate use zones for children, young people, adult and specialised groups. It required modern administrative facilities and improved access, all within a limited budget.

The new library design was articulated as a series of ‘boxes’ that accommodate the different functions. The existing squash court ‘box’, for adults, is lined with rich dark timber shelving that focus toward a theatrically lit raised reading and performance platform. In contrast, the new light-filled children and young people library ‘box’ has a glazed wall framing the enormous volume of the site’s majestic heritage-listed fig. A series of timber walkways and decks wrap their way under the fig to the entry and to a colourful reading lounge ‘box’. The entry is signalled by a large timber stair tower, inspired by the town’s post office tower and Norfolk pines.

*Team* Mark Trotter, Hayley Crofts, Neil Roberts, Skye Rayner, Nathan Hildebrandt, Tanya Roth, Frank Moss

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