Nanjing Normal University – Library of Zijin Campus

  • area / size 44,885 sqft
  • Completed 2020
  • Location Nanjing, China,
  • DUTS design completed the Library of Zijin Campus at the Nanjing Normal University with space and functionality in Nanjing, China.

    In July 2019, the Zijin Campus of Nanjing Normal University, with a long history and a simple style ended its mission as a university campus. The campus covers a total area of 110,000 square meters, and the “above-ground” building area is 80,000 square meters. It leaves many campus memories for its past students and the cultural link between this university and the city.

    DUTS Design accepted the invitation of Gemdale in 2019 to carry out the overall renovation design work of the original Nanjing Normal University Zijin Campus. Recently, the renovation of the original “library” has been completed. The designer took inspiration from the architectural history and the emotional memory of the urban life, and injects contemporary design aesthetics and complex modern life formats into this nearly 70-year-old library. The rejuvenated library becomes a new landmark cultural center that contains complex functions such as display, business, office, business, and communication, and is full of humanistic life.

    The retention of the emotional memory of the “library” as a public cultural building and make it continue to be full of vitality in contemporary life has become the main issue considered by the designer. After repeated research and scrutiny of the space, architects of DUTS design refined the classic memory points in the original building, retained its overall form and facade outline, and made it more open and modern through modern architectural methods.

    The library on the Zijin campus of Nanjing Normal University has a long history. The new renovation retains the original architectural style, innovatively breaks through the traditional layout, creates a more functional core, and integrates vertical transportation, sunny patios, and shared spaces. The traffic core of the facade is clear and powerful, and the horizontal is transparent and stretched.

    The original library has a single function. Protect books and maintain a quiet reading environment to make the building space relatively closed. The designer transformed the original traffic space into a 24m high public showcase, highlighting its cultural landmark. Increasing openness and sharing also reflect the development direction of modern urban public cultural space.

    The designer introduced “mountain viewing platforms” to the building to strengthen the interactive relationship between inside and outside. People in the space can look at the Purple Mountain through the window in the leisure time of communication, absorb the power of nature, and find their inner peace.

    In terms of façade modeling, the original composition relationship is maintained, but the originally closed vertical volume is changed to transparent glass, with multiple public platforms. Here, people’s activities have a stage for display  just like a window to the city, while at the same time they can lean on a railing and overlook the beauty of the purple mountain in the distance.
    History, function, and landscape resources have formed a perfect fusion under modern design techniques.

    In order to continue the warm memory of the books in this space, the designer merged the first and second floors of the “library” into an open, transparent and humanistic high-rise atrium space, with continuous integrity on both sides of the space To define the book wall, the dividing lines of the bookshelves continue to the ceiling to form a continuous arch, which strengthens the spirituality of the space. At the end, the introduction of natural light becomes an implicit communication between nature and humanity in the space.

    Architect: DUTS design
    Photography: Qinshan Wu