This building houses the Albury region’s library, museum, community centre and IT facilities, all under one roof.
It is part of a masterplan that combines cultural buildings with a new public square and landscape. With this project, ARM pioneered the model of a library and museum that share staff and management. Our client, the City of Albury, needed the building to be an urban marker that would engender a sense of place. ARM developed a masterplan in which the Library/Museum is a beacon on its corner. It also connects via pathways through QEII Square to the neighbouring Albury Art Gallery and Albury Entertainment Centre.
Albury’s library loans increased by 50 per cent, compared to the facility it replaced. It attracted 11,000 new memberships in its first 12 months. The Library/Museum welcomes around 220,000 visitors per year.
Our architecture is connected to its location in a literal and accessible way. It stitches together familiar elements from the Albury region: the Murray River banks, levees and trees of the surrounding landscape, the river course itself, the streetscape of the civic precinct, the cornices of a railway carriage—even the materials of Albury’s buildings. The row-of-X’s façade motif references the giant webbing of the railway bridge over the Murray. The design looks bold from the street and creates a significant backdrop for the Square.
Albury has best-practice sustainability features equivalent to 5-Star Green Star including passive solar design, high-performance low-energy mechanical solutions, low-energy high-frequency lighting and rainwater recycling.