chiangmai life architects builds concentric bamboo school library with oculus in thailand

3 weeks ago 12

bamboo library in thailand by chiangmai life architects

Chiangmai Life Architects fuses natural, modern bamboo architecture with state-of-the art engineering to integrate the new Panyaden Secondary School Library in Chiang Mai, Thailand, into its natural context. The low-lying structure features an organic design typology centered on concentric circles. With earthen adobe walls, the school is topped by a reciprocal, two-tiered bamboo roof with an oculus skylight at its core, and supported by bamboo truss archways throughout the interior and exterior.

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central sunken pod for comfortable reading and group discussions surrounded by a bamboo archway

an organic, concentric design language 

Having previously designed the Panyaden International School’s science labs and music center, and sports hall, Chiangmai Living Architects now unveils their new design for the school’s library. The facility fosters a serene and inspiring atmosphere, combining traditional study spaces with tables and desks, with relaxed lounge-like spaces for reading and studying. At the center of the rounded plan is a sunken pod with raised amphitheatre seating, equipped with cushions and beanbags for comfortable reading and group discussions.

In line with the architects’ concentric approach, directly above is an oculus skylight, streaming natural light and fresh air into the library. Further reinforcing this design language, the central pod is first flanked by small, built-in working tables, and then by the bamboo archway that houses the main bookshelf section which is radially oriented with various of study spaces integrated within. The library also includes two noise-insulated study rooms for group sessions and a small office for the librarian.

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bamboo truss archway

a natural earth structure topped by a bamboo roof 

Integrating the building into its environment, Chiangmai Life Architects makes use of natural materials such as earthen adobe bricks for the walls, and bamboo for the roof, trusses, and archways. The upper level of the double-layered roof with a skylight cupola is a reciprocal design ,with each structural bamboo culm supporting the next without need for supporting pillars.

The architects further equip the Panyaden Secondary School Library with a state-of-the-art central cooling system that gently emits cool air, without the uncomfortable feeling of a cold air current. The structure is also fitted with a fresh air system, that during the burning season provides ultra clean air by blowing filtered air from the outside into the room thus creating a positive pressure that prevents polluted air from entering when the door is opened. This system is also useful during other seasons as it continually provides fresh oxygen thus creating an optimal room climate for studying.

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sunken pod with eye image with amphitheater raised seating

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reciprocal bamboo roof with skylight ‘eye to the sky’

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circular bamboo archway

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circular bamboo roof with 2-layers and skylight

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entrance to the library framed by a bamboo arch

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bamboo roofs of Panyaden International School featuring the secondary school library

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drone shot of the circular bamboo roof of the secondary school library

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entrance to the library showing the 2-layered bamboo roof and skylight.

project info:

name: Secondary School Library at Panyaden International School 
architects: Chiangmai Life Architects
location: Chiang Mai, Thailand

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edited by: ravail khan | designboom

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