Light and Transportable Parametric Wooden Street Library in Bulgaria

Light and Transportable Parametric Wooden Street Library in Bulgaria

As young people today spend more time on digital media, very few seem interested in reading a book. This has impacted the popularity of books among this generation. To solve this issue and encourage the love of reading in youngsters, a team of architects and designers (Yuzdzhan Turgaev, Boyan Simeonov, Ibrim Asanov, and Mariya Aleksieva) from Downtown Studio decided to build a street library in Varna, Bulgaria that is both light and transportable. Titled Rapana, this is the first street library in Bulgaria. 240 wooden pieces have been used to build the library which is capable of holding around 1500 books! Isn’t it interesting? SURFACES REPORTER (SR) has brought to you more information about this fascinating library. Take a read:  

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Located at the sea sided of Varna, which is also known as “The marine capital of Bulgaria, the Rapana library is designed by taking cues from nature and its organic shapes. This is the main reason behind the resemblance of the shape of the library with the shell of a sea snail.


Its installation took into consideration the most vital aspects of the city including the sea and its value to the citizens of Varna. The structure has a natural undulating form that goes from a single focal point to a semi-circle.


It provides a public space along with shelves for keeping the books at the same time.

Parametric Design Tools

Rhinoceros 3D and Grasshopper are the parametric design tools that have been used to form the structure of the building.


These tools help architects to try an assortment of shapes and variations.

Also Read: 7 Popular 3D Modelling Software in Architecture | Surfaces Reporter

The installation takes into consideration the most important aspects of the city’s identity – the sea and its value to Varna’s citizens.


The abstract construction unravels from a single focal point and develops into a semi-circle whilst creating a public space and shelves for placing books at the same time.

Using the software, the team tested over 20 variations, changing the number of vertical and horizontal wooden pieces and their width and height.


We ended up with the final design, fitting the budget and the open library’s concept, providing easy access for the readers, sitting spaces, plus a tiny stage for street artists and lounge sessions. 


Using the Rhinoceros 3D tools the construction was divided into pieces, which were produced using a CNC machine from 250 x 125 cm wooden sheets.


The open library is easily accessible and stayed within budget for readers. It offers a sufficient sitting area along with a small stage for artists and lounging.

Project Details

Architects: Downtown studio
Architect In Charge: Yuzdzhan Turgaev
Location: Varna, Bulgaria
Year: 2017
Images: Emanuil Albert
Text and Image Courtesy: Downtown Studio

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