‘Magical’ village library in China wins 1st Moriyama architecture prize

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By CTVNews.ca Staff
October 12, 2014, CTVNews

A community library on the outskirts of Beijing that uses firewood collected from the village as one of its primary building materials was awarded the first Moriyama RAIC International Prize in Toronto Saturday night.

Raymond Moriyama, the noted Canadian architect who created the prize, awarded the $100,000 prize to China’s Li Xiadong. “He’s a genius and he’s pointing the way to the future,” Moriyama said in his remarks.

Li’s low-cost and highly-effective village library is a fitting tribute to Moriyama’s vision for a prize that would honour “great architecture than transforms us.”

The Liyuan Library is a five-minute walk from the town centre of Jiaojiehe, a Chinese village with a population of 300.

While the exterior of the building first looks plain to an unsuspecting visitor, every aspect of the interior of this unique public space is spectacular and seems to reflect the natural beauty in the hillside outdoors.

The stepped platforms of the reading areas provide clients with a secret hideaway, designed for enjoying a good book.

The library is heated by the sun in the winter. In the summer it is cooled by water from the river next to it.  Read more…

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