Aluminium “wizard hat” tops New York library renovation

A sculptural aluminium crown tops New York’s Stavros Niarchos Foundation Library, which has been renovated by DutchAluminium-wizard-hat-tops-New-York-library-renovation practice Mecanoo and American firm Beyer Blinder Belle.

Formerly called the Mid-Manhattan Library, the steel and granite library dates from 1914 and was built as a department store.

Its original structure has been retained and the renovation introduces a three-storey “vertical library”, business and educational facilities and a publicly accessible rooftop garden and café.

The mechanical equipment of the Stavros Niarchos Foundation Library’s (SNFL) is now concealed by a blue aluminium structure designed to echo the copper-clad mansard roofs of the neighbouring beaux-arts buildings.

“The SNFL is a powerhouse of wisdom,” said Mecanoo partner Francis Houben.

“Its street presence brings drama and magic to Manhattan, visibly expressed with its wizard hat.”

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