Sameep Padora Designs an Undulating Brick Vault for a School Library in India

Mumbai based architecture firm Sameep Padora & Associates (sP+a) has constructed a brick vaulted Maya Somaiya Library for a school in the Indian town of Kopargaon, which is situated in the state of Maharashtra.

Mumbai based architecture firm Sameep Padora & Associates (sP+a) has constructed a brick vaulted Maya Somaiya Library for a school in the Indian town of Kopargaon, which is situated in the state of Maharashtra. The library belongs to Shri Sharda English Medium School. The firm has looked at the covered brick ceilings found in Catalonia to develop this complex arched roof. Earlier, Sameep Padora & Associates created a Buddhist Learning and Skill Development centre in Sakharwadi.

Sameep Padora

The construction work of the library was started in the year 2015 but the project remains unbuilt for 2 years. The structure of the school library covers a narrow footprint of land between the school’s boundary and the school’s existing buildings. The idea of creating this design is basically a formal extension of the ground plane.

Sameep Padora Designs an Undulating Brick Vault for a School Library in India

 According to the studio, “Alluding to the intuitive impetus that children have towards landscape we imagined the library building to be a formal extension of the ground.” They further said, “using brick as material for its tactility, availability as well as its utility as insulation against the strong sun."

Sameep Padora Designs an Undulating Brick Vault for a School Library in India sP+a’s Design team liked the material efficiencies of the Catalan tile vault, which was used by Spanish architect Rafael Guastavino Moreno in the early 19thcentury. To give a pure compression form for the Maya Somaiya Library, Sameep Padora & Associates used rhinoVAULT, which is a kind of plug-in created by the Block Research Group at ETH Zürich.  It was also earlier been used to design a robotically fabricated wooden structure, which was formed with the help of 225 individual panels, in addition to a canopy created wholly from stone with no extra fixings. So, the different geographic locations and different time periods were considered while creating this library.

Sameep Padora Designs an Undulating Brick Vault for a School Library in India

The building of an undulating but extremely strong roofscape became possible by the holding three layers of 32-millimeter-thick brick tiles together by mortar. The roof spans 44 meters. Angular glazed walls in the library ensure natural sunlight. And the roof of the library is entirely accessible.

Project Details:

Architects: Sameep Padora & Associates
Location: Kopargaon, Maharashtra, India
Design Team: Vami Sheth Koticha, Archita Banerjee, Manasi Punde, Aparna Dhareshwar
Area: 5750.0 ft2
Project Year: 2018
Photographs: Edmund Sumner

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