Geelong Library Heritage Centre

The Geelong Library and Heritage Center is a new landmark in the City of Geelong, since its completion in 2015. The project required a visionary design to not only be a useful, meaningful space for the community but a structure with a modern layout and design for the 21st century. One of the big strategic objectives for the city was that the building actually be iconic, to be a landmark building. And I think you can say that theyve achieved that quite successfully. I love that theyve done by building something thats very modern and unique. Patti Manolis, Chief Executive Officer, Geelong Regional Library It was quite ambitious in the role that a library would play in Geelong. Most people would say that they want something in the community thats a standout and an attractor. But the council, both in the brief and in their mood, was very much about the importance that the project could play in a city thats in a bit of a transition. Ian Mcdougal, Director of ARM Architecture This first floor was designed to have a gathering-place feel like a caf or community meeting space. The cavernous space is divided with partitions that incorporate acoustic paneling for sound reduction, adding to the cozy atmosphere. The fractured dome design of the building allowed for ample floor space and the bottom with meeting and repository areas on upper levels. Walking through the Library and Heritage Centre, the use of contrasting colors and utilization of both natural and protective finishes on the paneling allowed to create a unique style for each department. The Heritage Centre, for example, boasts bold red hues on the walls, carpeting and all the shelving. Contrasting this, the relaxing meeting places and media rooms incorporate a placid blue tone. Perhaps most striking of the interior are the 3D hyper dome acoustic panels that not only created a quieter living space, but reflected the design of the exterior dome. More than 400 panels were custom measured and installed in interlacing patterns to achieve the textured effect. One of the largest projects collaborated on to date, Atkar was proud to be a part of this modern redesign. The public reception was immensely positive and the project achieved recognition by taking the 2015 State Award for Excellence by the Concrete Institute of Australia, the Victorian Architecture Medal, the William Wardell Award for Public Architecture and the Marion Mahoney Award in 2016. Upon opening, the new Library saw 21,000 guests the first week and 83,000 in the first 2 months.

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