Springdale Library & Komagata Maru Park, Brampton

RDH Architects, Toronto

Photography: Nic Lehoux

Several major architectural moves are employed to weave together a multi-programmed library and community room. For example, the design team collaborated with Brady Peters, a generative design specialist at the University of Toronto, to create a solar-responsive ceramic frit pattern on the building’s windows. Its striated patterns range from white to dark grey, expanding and contracting based on solar orientations while also visually merging with a series of stainless steel rods that add an additional layer of solar resistance while supporting the glazed units and forming the courtyard enclosures. These elements are conceived as a functional abstraction of two combined metaphors: the turning pages of a library book and the trunks of trees in a forest. Then, of course, there is the oculi. Fashioned from perforated drywall fixed to off-the-shelf framing components, it tempers noise levels, creatively spreads light within the library, and combines awe and wonder with an unusual sense of shelter and togetherness.