Auroville Public Library 

The library is designed as an open plan with the largest area being double height; to house the books, administrative and other services are set to one side while the entry is on the opposite side. The entrance is treated as a gateway to the backcourt where the main library is to be sited in future. The cafe makes the other flank of the entry. The envelope is dictated by climate – hot humid in an electrical energy deficit zone of the country. Hence operational energy dependency for lighting and ventilation is to be minimal. The long facade is north-south to minimize heat gain while allowing for a 45⁰ angle of incidence to the prevailing wind directions; maximizing the wind shadow to increase the indoor wind velocity. The openings are deep set with vertical fins and roof overhangs to prevent glare and heat gain without compromising on the ventilation and lighting.

There are solar chimneys introduced to create an induced ventilation cycle. The large spanned main hall is a truss roof with insulated aluminium sheet roofing. The high embodied energy of the aluminium roof is offset by having a light-weight roof, reducing the load on the building supports. This minimizes the foundation and RCC frame size/ load. Free-standing columns mirror the Palmyra trunks while the walls are in stabilised rammed earth. These non-load bearing rammed walls are made from earth excavated from foundations trenches and water harvesting swales on site. The texture of the earth walls is offset by exposed RCC columns, aluminium roof and stacks of solar chimneys.