Shaped as an “X”, the building’s layout aids users in navigating the library’s 150,000 volumes by assigning each wing to its own discipline – arts to the northeast, science and technology to the northwest, humanities to the southeast, and literature to the southwest.
This creates an opportunity for a “space of confluence for both knowledge and power,” as OMA associate-in-charge Clement Blanchet described, where the library maximizes interaction between disciplines by offering a fully transparent, naturally lit reading room with unobstructed views to the water and the city at its first floor core.
“This library is a symbol of the lateral thinking of the 21st century,” Blanchet stated. “Its form is based on an almost primitive action: two lines crossing, generating a centrality which groups four polarities. It is an agora of ideas, a place that might reinforce the role of books in an increasingly digitized world.”
The library is scheduled for completion in early 2016.