Architects Team: Li Sheng, Shi Zheyu, Li Yinchao, Liu Yueyi, Ou Xing
The Liva river runs right through the central campus of East China Normal University in Shanghai. Here, architects renovated the abandoned warehouse in a previously underutilized area of the campus to become a book bar with serene and secluded spaces for reading, drinking tea, socializing and relaxing.
The existing architectural structure was maintained, and a glass extension was added in front of the upper level, while on the ground level an open space was created for a canteen. The design team transformed the features of the existing slope roof and added a partial mezzanine below it. The original building was a traditional masonry-timber structure, so red bricks and corroded steel plate were chosen to form the main facade, which blends into the environment; the varying materials also help delineate separate spaces.
During the process of transforming the site, architects sought to create a harmonious relationship between architecture and the natural landscape. Glass bricks and windows were used to connect the site with the surrounding nature, and paving appears both outside and within the structure. A partially sunken plaza was built between the study and the existing Chonger pavilion, offering more spaces for teachers and students to meet. The pavilion was renovated based on its original design.
Corroded steel plate was used to remake the handrail and stairs and the glass door and windows were removed to create more space. This sideboard was refurbished, with the hope that the popular spot will continue to be considered a romantic site.