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Federal Institute of Acre library Renovation

AP Arquitetos (@aparquitetos) • Instagram

The city of Rio Branco in Acre has a population of more than 400,000 inhabitants and a Human Development Index below that most of brazilian cities. The renovation of the library of the Federal Institute of Acre, the agency responsible for the technical education of young people, acts as a factor of great relevance in the local context.


The library is located on the Campus of the Federal Institute of Acre in the city of Rio Branco, northern Brazil. This is the 2nd floor of the west wing of the main building. The project foresaw the renovation and readjustment of the flows of an area of 800 sqm, with provision for new reading rooms, access control, cabinets, new carpet flooring, and new furniture. The building, with a traditional concrete structure molded in place, could not undergo significant changes in terms of pillars, beams and frames in its perimeter. The project was carried out with a budget of only $ 60.000 including labor execution, materials and taxes costs.



In this way, the project's strategy was to organize the pavement based on the creation of a striking and central element in the space called “culturação” (culture (cultura) + heart (coração)). This acts as a spatial organizer combining several functions such as collection, reserved reading area, small social areas, reception and luggage compartment. Its central organization is ideal for the collection of books in a way protected from natural light since there was no budget for the installation of sunscreens in the space's perimeter. The others spaces like Reading rooms, living area, research rooms, socializing área are distributed around this equipment.

The organization os the space reevaluates the traditional library layout. On the one hand, it is contrary to the enlightenment library that organized the books on the edge of the space and reserve the central area for reading. On the other hand, it is also not just based on the more contemporary concept of inverting traditional library, placing books in the center and reading areas on the perimeter of the space. In this case, the intervention uses the central object, culturação, built with medium-density fibreboard sheets in blood red color, enhancing its symbolic and conceptual character. The sheets reflect in a diffuse way both books and space users creating a true microclimate inside. Allied to this, low power lights were installed encouraging an immersive and peaceful environment. Its shape is linear with the possibility of disposing internal and external books. Next to the access, reception and control were arranged. Six openings allow people to access the interior of the culturação furniture, in addition, four semi-circles create living areas and seating for people while they search inside the furniture. Thus, the culturing object becomes a hybrid object between the area of ​​readings and collections, between image and infrastructure. At the same time it offers spaces of intimacy and contact between users, thus acting dynamically in the existing space.

The revitalized library has a capacity for up to 20,000 books to be used throughout the campus of the Federal Institute of Acre with its more than 1,500 students and employees.