Paris-based studio RH+Architecture designed a library in French Guiana as a building completely encased in timber lattice. The encasing was constructed from narrow timber slats and acts as a brise soleil which blocks out direct sunlight but enables natural ventilation. The space between the actual building is punctured by dozens of small openings, and the envelope creates a pleasant shady area.
The library is located in the center of the newly constructed Rectorat de Guyane campus in capital city Cayenne, and aims to reinvigorate the neighborhood and the city. It provides additional community spaces and the shaded intermediate space between the two layers of the building called “gallery”. The gallery widens on the eastern side and is transformed into a spacious entrance lobby.
Inside, the space is separated into public reading rooms, staff offices and storage areas. A temporary exhibition area is part of the main reading room, which has a staircase that leads to the study spaces on the mezzanine floor. The interior is dominated by suspended lighting pendants that create a playful and reader-friendly environment.