Slough, London, United Kingdom / Bblur Architecture
Plans are under way for the Curve, a 4,447-square-meter (47,86-square-foot) library and cultural center in the industrial London suburb of Slough. Designed by London-based Bblur Architecture, the complex will contain a library, adult-education facilities, a café, and a performance space. Part of Heart of Slough, an $800 million urban master plan developed by the Slough Borough Council to revitalize 27 downtrodden acres of the city’s downtown, the $19.4 million Curve sits adjacent to St. Ethelbert’s Church. “The new library ‘cuddles and protects’ the church and forms a very simple curved backdrop for St. Ethelbert’s,” says Matthew Bedward, a partner at Bblur, who also notes that the “form of the new library is based on creating a walkthrough between the new crossroads … [created as part of Heart of Slough] and the main civic square of the town center.” The interior’s curved floor plates are designed to create intimately scaled learning spaces for users and to maintain sight lines between the two floors under a photovoltaic-studded roof. Bblur is no stranger to the suburb’s master plan: its new Slough Bus Station opened in May. Construction on the Curve is set to start in early 2012; the building is slated for completion in 2013.