Kapiti Coast District Council commissioned Beca for the provision of building services for the new public library in Paraparaumu. The project comprised 1750m² of general library space, plus an archive collection, office/workroom spaces and meeting rooms located on the upper level.
The brief was to create a landmark civic building with defining architecture and a low-energy facility that provided long term value over the life of the building. A key design goal was to keep the main library space comfortably cool without air conditioning. This was achieved using an integrated design approach using an underfloor labyrinth as the supply ventilation path to floor diffusers, and overnight ventilation to recharge the labyrinth in summer.
Extensive use of 3D computer modelling was employed to predict the performance of the underfloor system, allowing information on its performance to be clearly conveyed to the client to inform decisions.
The features which distinguish the building, include:
- external louvre solar shading, and double glazing
- enhanced levels of thermal insulation
- exposed structural elements
- a double-layer ground floor slab and labyrinth supply air pathfor ventilation air, and floor diffuser supply to the space
- overnight ventilation to pre-cool the structure
- 100% outside air ventilation system to improve internal air quality intelligent control systems.
The integration of the engineering and architecture provided Kapiti Coast District Council with a landmark facility costing no more to construct than a traditional solution, but offering additional value over its economic lifetime. A Victoria University building use survey confirmed user satisfaction with the library comfort conditions with a top score of 7/7.