Penoyre & Prasad has worked with Wolverhampton on a series of projects to develop Wolverhampton’s Learning Quarter. The City Council, University and Adult Education Services are collaborating on urban regeneration to transform two urban blocks including three listed buildings in the city centre. Wolverhampton’s Grade II* listed Central Library is one of the finest. Our scheme refurbishes and enhances it as a performance space and a learning resource centre, providing significant new accommodation and improving accessibility for up to 3,000 visitors per day.
A highly visible extension, which will house additional reference space, has an intriguing layered façade, its terracotta and steel cladding panels arranged like words on a page, with small glazed sections as the spaces between them. Lines of poetry are engraved on the longer glazing strips. The glass-roofed, 3-storey atrium creates a relaxed hub and accommodates a variety of activities. Careful acoustic control will ensure an authentic library ambience is maintained, particularly in the non-fiction, reference and study areas on the upper floors.
The transparency of the elevations creates an openness and accessibility whilst retaining a civic gravity befitting its location and proximity to the well loved listed Library.