Register: JUL/30/2018, Submit: JUL/31/2018, Eligibility: Architects, architecture graduates, students, engineers; individually, (interdisciplinary) teams up to 3 members, Fee: Indian nationals 1500 INR (Indian rupee), foreign nationals 60 EUR (MAY/01 – JUN/30/2018); Indian nationals 1,800 INR, foreign nationals 80 EUR (JUL/01 – JUL/30/2018); discount for 5 teams from one architecture school/university, Awards: 1st Prize 1,00,000 INR (about 1,250 EUR), 2nd Prize 60,000 INR (about 750 EUR), 3rd Prize 40,000 INR (about 500 EUR), 10 Honorable Mentions
Japan and its people have been at the forefront of a digital revolution since the past four or five decades. The country has long existed between two realms. On the one hand, we have the traditional “old world” of temples, tea ceremonies and calligraphic cherry blossoms. On the other hand, there shines a futuristic “new” world of bullet trains, AI dogs, anime pilgrimages, 2.5-dimension theatres, digital currency like J-coin and receptive gaming consoles. Japan has been a place of fascination throughout the years, particularly to those interested in media and popular culture, business, science and technology, and other related areas such as transport and tourism.
Experts are debating the effects of ‘obsessive’ digitization in the country which is isolating the people from one another. A high percentage of Japanese people are aging while the younger people are staying away from interacting with one another. Contemporary Japan and the whole set of its younger population are immersed in high speed internet and mobile-app culture. With almost everything available to people virtually on the internet and a click away on the mobile applications, people in Japan are the most exposed to a digital culture than most of their contemporaries in the world.
The digital revolution stands out from its predecessors in a critical way: rather than making it easier for humans to use their surroundings more effectively for their own benefit, technology is displacing humans in the workplace. has the power to both reform the age-old education setup and even to destroy the ethics of the prevalent system? But its impact on the human institutions and functionalities can never be ignored.
The onset of digital revolution has questioned the existence of many institutions and technologies around the world. High speed internet and communication systems have made available a large pool of data online. It is easier than ever for any person to gain, share and spread knowledge on the internet than through traditional methods and institutions. Libraries have been considered as the ‘Temples of learning and knowledge’ through ages. Libraries are knowledge-dispersion centers with a large pool of books, documents, manuscripts, papers and what not.” Because people so often identify libraries with physical books, new digital information and communication technologies have spawned speculation whether libraries, as such, are obsolete. Digitization creates new challenges and opportunities, however, forcing libraries to both take on new roles and perform traditional roles in new ways.
The aim of the competition is to create an iconic 21st century ‘public library’ in the city of Tokyo, Japan and debate its role in a ‘digital age’. The proposal must aim to become a solution to the frequently questioned vitality of a library by enhancing and transforming its capabilities as a ‘knowledge sharing and research prototype’ that will become a model for the future libraries of the world.
Define the purpose and outlook of a public library in a tech-obsessed setup and context. The participants must strive to create the ‘right’ model for a library in the digital city of Tokyo. They must aim to justify the validity and viability of either a traditional library, a futuristic digital library or a ‘hybrid’ in a changing world. The participants are free to create their own interpretation of a library which should be more than just a ‘space to collect and store knowledge’. They are free to tweak the existing program of a library and make space for new spaces and technologies that will give a more holistic outlook to a public library. The participants can alter the basics of a library building, preserve their traditional elements or even create a new way that would make libraries a knowledge sharing space rather than just a knowledge gathering unit. The participants are free to add, eliminate or create a balance between physical sources (books) and digital sources (internet) within a library depending upon their model for a public library.
Create a new response for a ‘public library’ through architecture. As the roles of libraries change, so will the physical buildings they occupy. A library that lets people eat, drink, and converse while they share information could be “a strong mission statement” for a new-age library. A library building should aim to become more open, dynamic and permeable architecturally so that it could attract more and more people. The participants must aim to break down the rigidity of traditional library space and create an informal learning environment for the end users. A library needs to become a new hub for social life among the local community. Programatically, the libraries should aim to become much less formal, much less guarded and much more inviting. Libraries should move towards a model that encourages readers to stay and linger, instead of their original function as spaces for collecting and lending out books. Libraries should reinterpret themselves to promote social exchange between users, much like community centers and aim to be a ‘public space’ in true sense.
Creating an icon that will have enrich and contribute to the culture of the city of Tokyo. Tokyo is a megapolis that is taking gigantic steps to become the city of the future. The library should become an icon and an important landmark for the city where people could converge and exchange knowledge. The impact of the library should be prolific, intense and symbolic that should reflect the contemporary nature of the city. The participants must aim to create some drama within the volume of the built form; that could be achieved by the factor of height, innovative structural systems, intriguing facades, interesting volumes and shapes, the art of contrast and material juxtaposition, interactive spaces, symbolic value etc.
SITE & PROGRAM
The site for the intervention is located at an edge of Kabukicho district and against the railways coming from Shinjuku station. The site faces the Yasukuni Dori promenade which runs adjacent to it providing easy access and visual access from multiple locations in the vicinity.
- Google Earth: Latitude: 35°41’38”N Longitude: 139°42’01”E
- Site Area: 1064 sq. meters
- Max built area: 10,000 sq. meters
Following are the programmatical features that are to be provided in the proposal for the library. The size, proportions and number of facilities are left to the participant’s discretion and imagination. Competitors are encouraged to design and propose any kind of innovative and intuitive program or function in addition and extension to the following list of functions, but with an argumentized necessity. Keeping in mind the paucity of space in today’s times, explore the possibility of designing multifunctional and dynamic spaces. Here is a list of some exemplary spaces that the participants can follow:
Browsing space, Stack Area, Book collection and reading spaces, Research area, Digital reading areas and labs, Circulation and reference desk etc.
Main Storage Facility, Bookbinding, Restoration, Conservation, Archive etc.
Administrative offices, Librarian’s office, Acquisition section, Cataloguing and processing section, Copier section, Conference rooms, Expert consultancy etc.
Open Air reading, Reception space and waiting area, Arts and media centers, Book and souvenir shop, Cloakrooms and lockers etc.
All these are exemplary areas for participants’ clarity. The programming should be done under these broad categories, but they are free to adhere, ignore, add or subtract to any one of the specific functions with a valid argument based on their theme and design.
- There are no height restrictions for the new intervention.
- The intervention can go underground up to 6 meters deep.
- Participants need not provide any parking space within the site.