West Vancouver Memorial Library

  • Category: Community
  • Address: 1950 Marine Drive, West Vancouver
  • Date: 2017

Ph5 successfully renovated the West Vancouver Memorial Library’s 8,000 square foot West Wing to support the library’s evolving programs and diverse patrons. The project refreshed the look, feel, and functionality of the West Wing. Through a space planning exercise with staff, the spatial layout and collections were reorganized to accommodate new program areas and lounges spaces. The renovation enhanced accessibility throughout the collection area, washrooms, lounges and offices. New materials and equipment were selected with sustainability in mind and efforts were taken to repurpose existing resources. Ph5 also arranged for sample lounge chairs to be tested by library patrons. Fabrics and seating were chosen to appeal to different user groups and distinguish one lounge area from another.

The challenge of working with the existing low ceiling and an array of exposed sprinkler lines, electrical conduits and light fixtures, influenced our design approach. Much attention was given to creating a clean flowing ceiling plane that would draw the eye across the space. The design expands the feeling of space by connecting the lounge areas with natural light and access to views. Under a long row of skylights where there is no view, we created one. Based on photos of local tree species, an abstract image of tree trunks in a forest was created. The image was printed directly on wood veneer panels and mounted on the 60’ long wall below the skylight. The light from above animates the tree patterns throughout the day and the seasons. The design also acknowledged a sense of place by employing a colour palette inspired by West Vancouver artist BC Binning.

The design was well-received by staff and patrons. The Board of Trustees wrote “thank you for your exceptional design and management of the Library’s West Wing renovations. They are beautiful. ….There is a unity, warmth, light subtlety, artistry, grace and a sense of place in the West Wing now. It beckons and welcomes people as they enter the library foyer”

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