MALAWI LIBRARYLilongwe, Malawi 2019
PROGRAM: 6,600 sq. m. Library and Masterplan
CLIENT: Miracle for Africa Foundation
BUILDING AREA (SQUARE):
The 66,000 sq. ft. library is organized via a section that provides maximum reflected light to the interior with optimum solar PV collection on the roofs. Natural light bouncing off curved prefabricated roof structures made of Ductile concrete form space like a “field within a field.”
The free plan library has meeting rooms and archives encased in glass for humidity control. A central rain collecting pool demarks the main circulation desk and ripples through the roof geometry like a wave field in cloud-like light.
The construction will utilize local stone and bamboo and local labor. Screens of locally crafted bamboo define the building perimeter leaving a shaded arcade space all around.
This library will be the initial construction of a new campus whose plan morphology has been inspired by paintings of a Malawi batik artist.
Malawi, called “The Warm Heart of Africa” has a population of 16.7 million. It is among the smallest countries in Africa (Lake Malawi is 1/3 its area). It is among the world’s least developed countries with the world’s lowest income per person (according to World Bank Report). The Miracle for Africa Foundation aims to serve the people of Malawi and Africa in need by expanding healthcare, education, and agricultural opportunities.
- Steven Holl ( design architect, principal )
- JongSeo Lee ( senior associate in charge ) Okki Berendschot, Hannah Ahlblad (project team)
– Steven Holl Architects