Promoting literacy and a lifelong love of reading, The Story Pod, a lending library plus community gathering space, is a small structure with star power. The pro bono project by architecture firm Atelier Kastelic Buffey is the realization of one community’s goal to create a central, modern landmark for the local residents to engage with one another.
The 8 foot tall, 8 foot wide and 10 foot deep building sits near a riverside walking trail near Main Street in the small Toronto, Canada suburb of Newmarket. During the day, two of the structure’s walls pivot open like the pages of a giant book, inviting passers-by to sit, relax, and perhaps borrow (or gift) a title or two.
AKB’s simple, yet highly functional, design was brought to life by city volunteers. The walls are made of vertical slats that vary in rhythm as one walks around the structure: the tightest spacing creates solid walls, the larger gaps let in light and views, and the widest openings display the shelves of books using UV-filtering Lexan, a shatter-proof glass alternative.
The Story Pod locks up at dusk. In the evening, using lights powered by the solar panel on the roof of the structure, the library is lit from within and serves as the glowing focal point of the riverside plaza.
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