News / Community library to serve as Cowie ‘shopfront’

Cowie Community Hub January 16 2020

Community library to serve as Cowie ‘shopfront’

3DReid has submitted a detailed planning application for a new-build community hub building in Cowie, Stirling. The project has been procured through Hub East Central Scotland on behalf of Stirling Council, who are working to realise the aspirations of the community.

Located in a prominent position on Cowie Main Street the scheme will provide new community facilities in the heart of the village and will comprise a library and versatile group rooms; largely using flexible spaces to support core community functions. Additionally working and meeting space for local businesses and a ‘maker’s space’ for innovative crafts will be provided. These facilities will provide the community with new flexible space suited to their needs and reduce the maintenance burden and running costs for the council. Improved insulation and renewable technology will contribute towards the buildings environmental credentials.

The choice of site followed a detailed appraisal of existing community facilities and local stakeholder consultation. By locating the new building on Main Street it will contribute to the ongoing reinvigoration of the commercial centre of Cowie. Modest external improvements are proposed at the street frontage to enhance the visitor and pedestrian experience.

Internally the double height library space is the focus of the building and is top-lit via a generous roof ‘lantern.’ This space faces directly onto Main Street and provides a public aspect to the building, opening into the two flexible group rooms to create one large space for public events.

The street façade responds to the ‘shopfront’ nature of the street, whilst a window and raised parapet on the corner respond subtly to the ‘stop end’ nature of the site. Brick facades mediate between the variety of materials in the immediate context.

Neil Middleton, Project Architect at 3DReid commented:

The clients focus from the outset of the project was for welcoming spaces with as much flexibility as possible. We have approached this brief by connecting the spaces in a variety of ways whilst maintaining a degree of specificity to each room.

The group rooms and library open onto one another to provide a large open space but when closed off each has their own character – the expansive library is top lit and faces the street. The large group room is partially double height and opens onto the garden and the small group room is top-lit via a rooflight. The interview room at the back of the building has a view towards the park and on approach offers a glimpse into the large group room. In contrast the meeting room is glazed towards the business space and has a lateral view towards the end of the street.

These characteristics contribute towards an easily legible building with a rich spatial experience.

Project team

Client: Stirling Council
Architect: 3DReid
Structural Engineer: Bayne Stevenson
M&E Consultant: Harley Haddow
Quantity Surveyor: Hub East Central Scotland
Principal Designer: Thomson Bethune
Project Management: Hub East Central Scotland
Transportation: Sam Shortt
Main contractor: Muir Construction
Procurement: Hub East Central Scotland

Visuals: © 3DReid

Cowie Community Hub

Cowie Community Hub Interior

Cowie Community Hub

Cowie Community Hub Design Rationale

Cowie Community Hub

Cowie Community Hub Main Street Elevation

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