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Municipal library in Krynica-Zdroj. Modern building surrounded by historic architecture

Dobrawa Bies
06 of November '20

The new library in Krynica-Zdrój, a town famous for its healing waters, is a proposal by Julia Ligęza of Warsaw University of Technology. Designed by the student, the building, which refers to the architecture of mountain spas, is to be a place where a healing spa is combined with the idea of a cultural spa.

The subject of Julia Ligęza' s engineering thesis, done under the supervision of Dr. Janusz Pachowski, is the design of a community library building with an accompanying program in Krynica-Zdrój. The project is intended to provide greater access to the library collection than before, as well as to be a stimulus for the creation of local cultural events. Its basic idea, however, is to enable the reader to meet a book in a friendly atmosphere. The library function is intended to expand the services of the cultural institution for local residents and diversify all services in this part of the resort. The proposed building is a place where the therapeutic spa is combined with the idea of a cultural spa, and the senior citizens' room located in the library responds to the needs of the elderly and is a place for integration and social and cultural meetings.

Elewacja północna

The design of the building refers to historical architecture

© Julia Ligęza

reference to the history of the spa

To create a design in line with the soul of the resort, Julia Ligęza made a historical analysis of the site. In the 17th century, mineral springs with healing properties were discovered in Krynica, which contributed to the development of the resort. In 1856, Jozef Dietl, the scientist who was the first to classify the healing waters, began his activities in Krynica. The first buildings of architecture related to hydrotherapy began to appear - inspiration was sought in world architecture.

Rzut parteru

The plot chosen by the author lies on the main compositional axis of the spa complex

© Julia Ligęza

Thelocation of the proposed library is the very center of the city - between the rising Kazimierz Pulaski Street and Nikifor Avenue. Nearby is the promenade and the new Mineral Baths. The gateway to Pulaski Street is formed by the "Sceptre" and "Crown" buildings, built at the end of the 19th century. Another historic building adjacent to the project area is Villa "Cis". It is a building finished with horizontal natural wooden planks, painted in an intense green color. The neighborhood of such distinctive, historic buildings was quite a design challenge for the student. The plot she chose lies in the main compositional axis of the spa complex and in an area particularly sensitive to the protection of medicinal waters in close proximity to walking trails. Its southern boundary coincides with the boundary of the historic urban layout listed in the register of monuments of the WKZ. The natural green backdrop on the southern side is formed by the forests of Mount Parkowa.

Elewacja zachodnia biblioteki

In the vicinity of the library are the Mineral Baths

© Julia Ligęza

The most important design inspiration for the author was the modern wooden architecture of the Swiss spa town of Davos - the highest city in Europe. It is where the World Economic Forum takes place. Krynica, being the highest located health resort in Poland and the Economic Forum, which takes place there every year, is called "Polish Davos".

inscribed in historical architecture

Designed by Julia Ligęza, the building is a tribute to the local "small homeland" and a turn to the future, in which the world is referred to as a "global village." In order to achieve the form resulting from the idea, and at the same time to design a timeless and economical object, the student used, among other things, HPL panels imitating natural wood in the facade. Their layout and size is an interpretation of the traditional carpentry installation of planks seen on the facades of Krynica's buildings. The vertical arrangement of the boards is reminiscent of the architecture of Davos, and the visible grout is the author's version of jointing, reminiscent of the so-called foreign tongue in joinery. The skylight used, on the other hand, is a reference to the glass covering of the Zdrój Główny water, located near the pump room.

Taras widokowy

From the terrace one can admire the view of the Parkowa Mountain

© Julia Ligęza

The functional-spatial layout of the library was divided in terms of employee zones, user zones and additional functions. The author made the division taking into account lighting and the level of potential noise. On the west side, the view of Park Mountain can be enjoyed from the terrace of the second floor. An important point is the skylight, through which light, thanks to cut-outs in the ceiling, reaches as far as level -1. Pushed forward, the body of the upper levels shades the terrace located on the first floor. The compact façade of the building has been sculpted and differentiated from Nikifor Avenue.

modern building structure

The building was designed using reinforced concrete technology. Julia Ligęza proposed a mixed structural system - column and slab and wall construction. The foundation is formed by a reinforced concrete foundation slab. Due to the proximity of the slope and the rising terrain, slurry wall foundation was used. The exterior walls are reinforced concrete, while the interior walls are masonry made of silicate blocks. The western elevation has a curtain wall of mullion and transom construction with triple-glazed infill, which are low-emission insulating glass units.

w Krynicy-Zdroju

HPL panels imitating natural wood were used on the facade

© Julia Ligęza

The structure of the skylight was designed as steel, and its main element is a spatial frame made of closed profiles. A triple-glazed solution was used - safety glass, glued, tempered from the outside and fixed peripherally on the structure. The library is adapted for the disabled. Along Pulaski Street there is a horizontal pedestrian lane allowing access to the facility without using stairs. There is a handicap-appropriate parking space on the first floor on the east side.


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