THE UNIVERSITY LIBRARY OF TRENTO
The new University Library of Trento – la nuova Biblioteca di Ateneo – represents 6.752 square meters of surfaces and is 7-floor high (amongst which two in the basement). The building hosts nearly 480.000 volumes from the Ateneo on 10.000 meters of shelves, and can welcome about 500 people, both users and employees.
The Library is located in the Albere district of Trento, a few seconds from the Adige, and about twenty minutes on foot from the Università degli Studi di Trento.
The building is composed of two main rooms, forming two cubes connected by a footbridge passing through an entrance hall. Thus, the entrance is located at the ground floor in a big glass space, conceived as a covered piazza. It represents the natural extension of the main axis, being visually connected to the Sciences Museum’s entrance hall. In this hall, a suspended flooring becomes protagonist of the space, filtering thus the light to the underground.
The core of the library is gathered in the two volumes: the walls of the galleries are entirely covered with books and the light benefits from a significant gap that controls the luminosity. The large galleries overlook the central empty space, that gradually decrease (from bottom to top), accompanying harmoniously the natural entry of the light, and forming all together spaces devoted to reading.
The offices of the Library are located in the volume 1 located in the east part of the building. In the second volume, you find to a multimedia room and three rooms welcoming open shelves.
The basement, formerly intended for a parking, finds a new noble function. Indeed, the underground room welcomes recesses that contain bookcases. In the central part of the underground you find both bookcases and reading spaces. Furthermore, in that same basement, books are archived inside two big rooms. All floors of each volume are connected by a panoramic elevator, enabling the users to reach the footbridge to go to the other volume.
Finally, the volumes are covered with opaque, overhanging and glass layers. The opaque layers are made of zinc sheet metal. For the overhanging layers, photovoltaic panels have been installed, with dimensions fitting with the structure. The entrance hall and the cubic volumes are covered with glass, both provided with thin layers controlling the solar radiation. The Library was inaugurated on the 19th of November 2016.
Photo credits: Enrico Cano
Designer: RENZO PIANO BUILDING WORKSHOP