Featured above is Anna Library- a green building using Low e glass, a green building product from Saint-Gobain. With blue glass facades glimmerings in the sunlight, the building is a delight to behold.The Anna Centenary Library is the largest library in Asia.
A gasping monolith of glass and paper, it’s a haven for those bitten by the book bug, and an inspiration for architects. Named after C.N. Annadurai, Tamil Nadu’s former Chief Minister who was a something of a famous bibliophile himself, the Anna Library can house up to a staggering 1.5 million books in various disciplines, newspapers and periodicals, manuscripts, books for handi-capable people including Braille, talking books, electronic and audio-visual media, computers and internet access.
A spectacular achievement by the State of Tamil Nadu, the Library is definitely a step in the right direction for Chennai’s infrastructure, breaking the stereotype that libraries need to be stuffy and chock-full of grim-looking wooden furniture.
The different sections in the Library are the Braille Section, the Children’s Section, the Periodicals Section, the Tamil Books Section and the English Books Section. It even has an “Own Book Reading Section”, which allows you to bring your own copy of a favorite novel, sit back, relax and enjoy the tranquility. No one will disturb you here.
Built on an 8-acre piece of land in Kotturpuram, the Library cost almost 180 crores to build. At any given point, the library can accommodate 1250 people, not including an auditorium of 50,000 sq.ft that can separately seat 1280 people. There’s also an amphitheatre on the terrace and two conference halls – is there nothing that this library doesn’t have?
Another important feather in this building’s cap is its eco-friendliness - it has been awarded the LEED Gold Rating (New Construction) by the Indian Green Building Council in recognition of its energy efficient design, with a rating of 43 points. A large part in this rating has been played by Saint-Gobain’s solar-control glass, Saint-Gobain Glass Nano, which regulates the temperature of the rooms and blocks the heat from entering the buildings, while allowing abundant light to pass in. This brings down electricity bills and reduces energy consumption by a huge margin In addition to this, the building’s skylight is made up of Antelio Plus ST 167 Sparkling Ice.
The other factors that contribute to the building’s green nature are its planning principles – the Library Block has been built facing the North-East, which allows maximum daylight to penetrate the building, the amphitheater is built on the auditorium roof, minimizing internal heat gain. The vast expanse around the building is landscaped, so that it creates a barrier between external noise and increases aesthetic value. Plus, green is easy on the eyes, as well as the environment.
More than 60% of the materials used to construct this amazing structure are locally sourced and recyclable, and it also believes in waste-water recycling. The lighting is environmentally-friendly as well, with a combination of LED and CFL lamps illuminating the way. Further awareness regarding Environmental Conservation and Green Principles among the public is promoted through use of graphics, posters and even an artificial tree in the heart of the Children’s Area that promotes the message of nature conservation.
A brilliant green dream is brilliantly realized through the Anna Centenary Library, a truly altruistic and progressive construction by the State of Tamil Nadu. If you’re ever in the area, don’t forget to stop by for a visit!
Read more on the low e glazing product used for Anna Library -SGG Nano