The transformation of a traditional library achieves a busy, vibrant cultural focus for Winchester. The existing building has been opened up to exploit the previously concealed rooflight and a circular mezzanine inserted to create an instantly legible and accessible library. Behind is a highly specified museum for special exhibitions. the building also contains a performance space and teaching rooms. A new space has been created to the side containing cafe and a popular bookshop.
The overall plan uniting these elements has real clarity and allows free flow between them as well as their individual use. The main library elements have excellent natural light and the new construction (for instance, the opening up of the side wall of the original library) is subtly managed.