The Elegant, Playful, Environmentally Friendly VAC Library in Hanoi, Vietnam

The Elegant, Playful, Environmentally Friendly VAC Library in Hanoi, Vietnam

Tuesday, 12 January, 2021

Until now, the ideal library of our imaginations was lined with floor-to-ceiling bookshelves stocked with appropriately creaky leather volumes. But the thoroughly modern, light-infused, open-air VAC library in Hanoi makes a strong argument for fresh air and a koi pond.

VAC stands for three Vietnamese words: vườn (garden), ao (pond), and chuồng (cage).

As its name implies, the library is a mashup of urban farm, playground, and library. Its inviting, climbable wooden frame houses books and a miniature, solar-powered ecosystem — a fish pond, a chicken coop, a garden — to teach kids about sustainable food production and ecology.

The project was designed to be educational, it’s also a playland for kids of all ages, featuring cubbyholes for curling up with a book, wooden beams that beg to climbed, and concrete stepping stones to visit the resident chickens and koi carp.

The aquaponic system that fuels the whole enterprise is a marvel of re-use: Waste from the koi pond and the chicken cages becomes fertilizer in the garden to help the veggies grow. After the waste is filtered out, water is returned — clean and fresh — to the pond. It’s self-sustaining and elegant.

the vac library in hanoi, vietnam

the vac library in hanoi, vietnam

the vac library in hanoi, vietnam

the vac library in hanoi, vietnam

the vac library in hanoi, vietnam

There are more stunning photos and super-cool architectural drawings at ArchDaily; all photos copyright Thai Thach and Viet Dung An.

 

Top image courtesy of Thai Thach and Viet Dung An.

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