JonathanY's project

2017 National DiscoverDesign Competition: Library + Community Space Design


Building on an empty parking lot of 9,375 square feet at the northwest corner of West Taylor Street and South Ada Street, Chicago. On the 75’x125’ lot in the Little Italy neighborhood of Chicago, we are to design a library to give the people access to library resources. The design will provide people with lots of books and information on various topics. This could be extremely helpful to students at a nearby college a few blocks to the left of the library.

Collect Info

The site is surrounded by many restaurants famous for their pizza and any stores ranging from comics stores to tattoo shops. In addition, many parks are in the area like Arrigo Park to the north of the site, Addams/Medill Park to the south of the site, and Vernon Park to the right of the site. The population of little Italy is around 25,000 people made up of a diverse group of people. In recent year there is a growth in student residence and faculty from the University of Illinois at Chicago. During the winter months, the temperature tends to be between 15 to 30 degrees. In the summer temperature range from 65 to 85 degrees Fahrenheit.

Brainstorm Ideas

When designing the library wanted to make sure that inside the library is free and open without much of wall to separate people. To accomplish this I decided that using a rectangular shaped building would be the best way to do this. Also in mind, I want to create a lively environment and I did so by adding a lot of windows to eliminate as much use of artificial lighting as possible. Another thing in mind is the fact that library tends to have a shortage of staff and computer for the public to use. so I incorporated 3 reference desk so people can get the help they need from the librarian and to check out books faster. My building is two floors with computers on both floors to allow more people to use them.

Develop Solutions

After many design idea, I decided on a rectangular shape structure to allow for easy circulation inside the building. I also decided to have a loft as a second floor to expand with the idea of openness and livelyness. the loft will allow people to see into the first floor from the second floor. With my idea of eliminating as much artificial light usage, I made part of the roof glass to let additional light in. The interior of the building is pretty much symmetrical to allow for people to locate each part of the building easily. Because of how open the interior is, people can interact and socialize more with one another.

Final Design

The stairs in my building do not interfere with any of the space in both floor 1 and 2 because I designate an area that extruded out to give the building a unique look and to also add some texture to the building. Because there is a college nearby, the computers available here would be perfect for the college students to use any time of day when they need it. Also, the reference area on the second floor would suit college student perfectly to write their essays and research papers. The high light of the library will be the partial glass roof because, during the sunny days, it will really brighten everything in the building and give off positive vibes.