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What about outside? Modern design or respect for the heritage buildings?

CLOSED: This discussion has concluded.
by admin 23 Aug 2011, 10:59 AM

Where we've come from or where we're going! Should the new library reflect and respect the heritage buildings within it's location? Should it be a modern design with contemporary feel that reflects the future? Discuss the possibilities and tell us why!

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Mr MS 23 Aug 2011, 04:48 PM
Respect heritage but not at the expense of access. I.e. smooth surface for wheelchairs. What about outside reading areas, under cover with quality coffee available.
Marrick 24 Aug 2011, 08:32 AM
Outdoor reading/meeting/presentation/performance spaces within sensory gardens would be brilliant. Seasonal scents from plants, visual aspects such as sculpures, installations and differing plant structures as well as sounds created from plants, water and installations. Voila! Modern design for sure...why attempt to replicate the past?
Bookworm 24 Aug 2011, 10:54 AM
What about a small community garden area outside the library? Maybe a 'green' area as well where on sunny days, story time could be held outside. Special activities could be organised for the green area like gardening demonstrations (for little ones too, not just adults!), worm farm workshops etc. Maybe painting classes could be held outside? Near a lovely new library cafe (with french doors that open onto it?) as well!
Trish 24 Aug 2011, 04:42 PM
I'm assuming the building is going to be a modern structure, therefore keep with the modern theme. I would like to see a smart and contemporary building, with nice green areas to sit and enjoy. I would also like to see some sort of cafe outside the library.
Philip Sydenham 24 Aug 2011, 06:38 PM
The site has a distinct historic flavour, and sits in a heritage precinct,
So the new library should reflect the heritage values, without either slavishly copying them, or making a jarring contrast.
Of significance it the Church opposite, and the remaining hospital buildings.
Respect also should be given to the mature trees on site.
There should be a significant retention of openspace/greenspace.
Architectural recognition of our sister cities would be a nice idea.
Recycle materials from the buildings to be demolished.
library 24 Aug 2011, 08:31 PM
Heritage bit nice but not at the expense of access and creating a useable, functional facility
Literate Perhaps 24 Aug 2011, 09:34 PM
Let's be proud of our own era. Why copy from previous times? Celebrate modern architecture. I would love to see an ultra modern building - something totally unique.
australiana 26 Aug 2011, 08:32 PM
Council should be seeking the most innovative and imaginative design possible and not be straitjacketed by the preoccupation with 'heritage'.

The Opera House thankfully paid no attention to heritage and everyone is thankful for that. While the new Library will not have the monument status of that building it nevertheless should be confidently part of the contemporary era and not a 'heritage' pastiche.
kt1800 31 Aug 2011, 11:10 AM
Coffee is a great idea with an outdoor area / community garden.

I think there is no point "mocking" the past. I love the surry hills library. It's clean and modern and I believe quite green too. It's a great addition to that area in surry hills, and it doesn't copy the older buildings around it. It would be nice to see a building in marrickville that is a bit different or experimental in it's design.
Prue-Community Engagement Team Coordinator, Communications and Engagement 02 Sep 2011, 01:59 PM
If anyone's interested - I've put up a short video about the Surry Hills Library you can have a look at.
Jodan 04 Sep 2011, 09:40 AM
New library should be modern but welcoming, not only hard glass walls you have to peer into to see if you are allowed in. The inside/outside areas should blend together on a human scale.Locate the cafe in the heritage buildings and ensure their use by housing local community groups offering essential information and providing spaces for community groups to work and run workshops. Local competition for water features/garden sculptures-keep it local! Sensory garden for vision-impaired, braille signs,path for wheelchairs.Council could locate native nursery there-hold info sessions on native/preferred plantings,local history and eco-walks with reference to library resources.
Viva La Marrickville 08 Sep 2011, 04:56 PM
I agree with the person who said we should not be straight-jacketed by heritage. Altho it needs to be in sympatico with the environment and I like the idea of some mirroring with St Brigids. Something about the space in the front and the lead up into the library, maximising that green space, outdoor learning and studying spaces, the sensory trail etc. Inside lots of natural light, teaming through. Innovative sensitive sustainable design. Something of a spire with the Aboriginal flag on top.
gumnut 10 Oct 2011, 12:36 PM
Heritage is importent to local people who have grown up in the LGA , so why not have heritage kept on the outside of the building & modernisation on the inside & keep everybody happy. (It seems some people are obsessed with coffee shops). Have plants & outdoor green space for sure.
resident 20 Nov 2011, 03:22 PM
The concept plans all have their pros and cons but it is good to see that council is going for good modern design and is not being constrained by a misguided attempt to copy the existing building styles of the old hospital site in the pursuit of perceived heritage. What is a concern however is the lack of clarity in all of the designs as to what is going to be built on the rest of the site. For example the old eight story nurses quarters on Livingstone road needs to go but to replace it with a building of the same scale would be ridiculous as the existing building dwarfs the surrounding area.

Building something of that scale may have been acceptable when planning controls were not as rigid as is currently the case but to replace with an eight story residential tower would be totally unsympathetic to the site, the neighbours and the locality. What about using that site as a community garden? Also the laundry and boiler house that fronts Lilydale has been slated to be replaced by a six story residential building. Again this is totally out of scale with its surrounds and would have a significant impact on the amenity of Lilydale street. Whilst council has every right to see a financial return on its investment it should not be done by oversubscribing the site with residential towers out of scale to the local neighbourhood.

Also of concern is the impact on the residents of Lilydale street. Council needs to ensure that adequate parking and pick up and drop off zones are incorporated into the master plan to prevent Lilydale street becoming a car park for the library.

Marrickville Council has a once in a generation opportunity to get the development of the old hospital site right. The concept plans for the library indicate to me that they are heading in the right direction. It is what is not being said about the rest of the site that gives me cause for concern.