North City Library 04

Chair and shelving: pic Demco Interiors

North City Library 03

Counter: pic Demco Interiors

North City Library 02

Double height viewing window pic Daniel Hopkinson, Walker Simpson Architects

North City Library 01

West view showing Library interior: pic Daniel Hopkinson, Walker Simpson Architects

North City Library 05

Library exterior,showing adjoining Sixth Form College (white): pic Daniel Hopkinson, Walker Simpson Architects



The main south-facing wall is clad with photovoltaic cells to convert daylight into electricity, providing up to 50% of tbe building's lighting needs. Solar panels reduce the need for boilers to heat water. Rainwater harvesting provides flushing water for the toilets.

Extensive exploitation of natural light, with high-level, two-storey feature window looking towards Manchester City Centre.

BMS (Building Management System): fresh air supply, air temperature and electric lighting are controlled automatically in response to changes in external temperature and internal environment.

Escalator and passenger lift access to main public library.

Floor to ceiling glass reading bays

Underfloor heating

Thermal mass - exposed polished concrete absorbs heat into the structure.

Automatic entrance doors

Wide doorways and corridors for ease of travel through building.

Accessible toilets on all floors

Baby changing facilities adjacent to children's library.

First floor: a vibrant and busy public library

- spacious,exciting and flexible space for children

- Access Point: free access to City Council services via dedicated web-based interface and freephone.

- CDs, DVDs and Playstation games

- Teen area

- Dedicated teen and children's PCs

- self-issue terminal and online computer booking

Second Floor - a quieter space designed for learning

- Two community meeting rooms

- Homework Centre

- 38 public access computers

- Adapted computers for disabled and visually impaired people

- building shared with North Manchester Sixth Form College: special provision and materials for college students


Silver award, Best Public Building, Roses Design Awards 2006 , RIBA Learning and Skills Council Further Education Award 2006

The Building

The Building

Type of library

Multi-purpose building


1105 m2




Walker Simpson Architects

Building contractor

Eric Wright

The Space

The Space

Features and services

Special services

Audiovisual/Multimedia areas, Group study spaces, Meeting rooms

External features

Nature of site, Shared building, Building shape, Materials, Landscaping

Internal features

Design features, Structural

Energy efficiency


Accessibility provision

Access between floors, Access to building, Access within building, Assistive technology, Furniture height, Parking, Signage / guiding

Interior designer

Demco Interiors / Walker Simpson Architects

Furniture suppliers

Demco Interiors

Services and facilities suppliers

Demco Interiors

IT provision

General, Internet access, Number of public computer terminals: 53

Seats/study places