Steven Holl’s library building in Hunters Point will open next year. Probably. Photo: Suk Lee One day — but not too soon — you’ll be able to step into the Queens Library at Hunters Point. Let your eye be carried skyward as if on a thermal current, up a canyonlike atrium walled by bamboo and books and great inkblot-shaped windows. Follow the route of stairs, landings, hanging mezzanines, bleachers, and ramps that corkscrew around the interior like some Seussian obstacle course, and you’ll be alternately mesmerized by the architectural topography within and the midtown skyline beyond. When this branch of the Queens Public Library, designed by Steven Holl Architects, opens early next year, it will function as magnet and torch. A vertical civic space set in a landscaped garden, it is the only new building in Long Island City to command its waterfront stage. At just five stories, the coffer of pale, sparkling concrete glimmers like mercury against a backdrop of matte towers. Holl’s library, a decade in the making and still nearly a year away from being done, is a two-sided emblem of Design and Construction Excellence, a Bloomberg-era initiative that has dusted the city with good buildings at… Read full this story
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