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BY-NC-ND 4.0 license Open Access Published by De Gruyter Saur 2021

6 Cultural Reconstruction of a Traditional Chinese Courtyard House into the Suochengli Neighbourhood Library

From the book New Libraries in Old Buildings

  • Yang Li


Suochengli Neighbourhood Library is located in a traditional Chinese siheyuan/courtyard house in the back garden of the historic Zhang Ancestral Hall in the port of Yantai in the Shandong Province of China. Over the years, owners and occupiers of the courtyard added new buildings and, although the original complex had been compromised, the additional structures were all precious evi­dence of the development of the complex over time. The relationship between the old and the new became the focus of a renovation project to bring the courtyard back into use suitable for a modern lifestyle while respecting its heritage. The site comprises three bungalows and a cloister which reframed the courtyard into several smaller connected sections. The various structures had the capacity to accommodate all the functions required of a modern library, including an invit­ing entrance, reading area, café, gallery and toilet. The library reading room and courtyard are connected by a sliding door which increases the flexibility of the main floor space and enables a range of activities to take place.

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