Posted by Martin Douglas Packer on December 16, 2002 at 12:46:45:
The following erudite letter appears in tonight's "Evening Mail" (quote): "Football Stadiums, origami sculpture, corporate headquaters - these are some of the impressions the proposed design for Birmingham's new central library give.
Of course, it will be designed by the famous Richard Rogers Partnership. This means it'll be made of glass and steel. It looks big, bld and imposing, but it doesn't look like a library.
Birmingham has some magnificent civic buildings such as the Art Gallery and Town Hall, and they look like what they are. The proposed new library, however is a salad, trying for too many causes. It lacks cohesion and coherence and looks temporary.
Stone, that is, granite and marble, stand for permanence, while slate on roofs stands for protection. Glass is good for greenhouses and office blocks.
Architecturally Birmingham may be about to make the same kinds of mistakes to be seen in some other city libraries.
Although there is some consultation on what should be in the new library, I suggest the people of Birmingham are allowed their say on what their library should look like.
DR.CHRIS HART, SCHOOL OF INFORMATION STUDIES, UNIVERSITY OF CENTRAL ENGLAND
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